Blockchain Empowering Small Farmers
A new agricultural ecosystem may be taking place in Africa by virtue of a new agri-tech company called Block Commodities. The company features a platform with three key pillars: generating a tokenized system, empowering small farmers, and the development of smart agriculture.
The platform is based upon blockchain, cryptocurrency, data sharing, and smartphones. Together, these technologies are being used to develop a blockchain-powered platform integrated with predictive behavioral analytics, data-driven markets, and machine learning.
In September, the platform began its pilot project that featured participation from 1,000 small-holder farmers received cryptocurrency loans and access to financing that enabled them to purchase items for their farming operations.
The platform’s experts believe that several factors tend to hold farmers back, including not enough information, lack of transparency, limited access to funding, and inefficient trading. Most significantly, the financial exclusion is what prevents farmers from overcoming poverty because they do not have the necessary resources to drive sufficient commerce. As a result, cryptocurrency loans may be what will help them improve production to the levels necessary to get banking institutions on board with financing.
Moreover, farmers can use tools and resources offered by agri-tech companies like Block Commodities. Smart solutions enable the farmers to take more control over their operations and to make decisions that enable them to reach the global market.
According to Clinton van Eden,
“When we look at the farming and agriculture landscape in Africa, in terms of production and economy, we see there has been great exclusion of smart-scale farmers from the market. 90% of food for the continent comes from European commercial farmers. Block works to integrate smallholder farmers into the system and give them access to the markets by adding value to their practices.”