Ghanaian Develops An App That Allows Diasporans To Farm In Ghana Remotely
Agritech entrepreneur Desmond Koney has developed a new mobile application that allows Ghanaians home and abroad to own and manage actual farms in Ghana remotely.
The platform’s social features also enable friends and family to be able to own actual farms across the continent together by forming co-operatives.
Christened ‘Complete Farmer’, the portal addresses key challenges faced by commodity buyers and food growers along Africa’s agricultural value chain.
Founded in 2017, the Ghana-based startup’s first offering brought farming to the fingertips of thousands of users around the world allowing them to own tech-enabled farms in Africa and digitally experience the farming process. ‘Farming without getting your hands dirty!’
With the roll out of its new offering, Complete Farmer is set to make an even deeper impact on the agriculture value chain.
The new platform is an end-to-end digital marketplace that enables global industries to source agriculture commodities, grown to their specifications, by users from all over the world using IoT, big data, and blockchain technology.
Established on April 10, the platform has been built as a three-sided marketplace where commodity Buyers, Food Growers, and Digifarmers can transparently participate in digital agriculture and interact on a single platform.
Commodity buyers from across the globe can build entire supply chains into Africa without having to work through middlemen, and get full visibility into the process from cultivation to post-harvest, quality control, transportation, and logistics using blockchain traceability features leaving them in no doubt on progress, yield and quality.
Desmond Koney, CEO of Complete Farmer said “with the rise of B2B e-commerce, expectations of B2B buyers are changing. The rise of the Amazons, Ubers, Googles, and the other big tech giants of this world are changing mindsets of commodity buyers who now expect an easy comparison of suppliers, seamless online ordering processes, and convenient deliveries. In an always-connected world where data is the new oil, commodity buyers also expect and deserve much more transparency in the production process.”
Buyers get an exclusive supply of agriculture commodities offered to their preferred location and grown to their desired specifications without the hassle of working with middlemen, who have notoriously monopolized the commodity markets in Africa due to the broken nature of the agriculture value chain.
Experienced farmers who sign on to become growers on the platform get access to proprietary cultivation protocols developed by Complete Farmer.
The company enables precision agriculture for growers on the platform through the use of satellite and IoT technologies that collect crop insights that are used in optimizing crop growth, supply chains, and farm management. Using this approach ensures that the product meets the strict requirements of the market. The intention is to disrupt the farming industry and enable more farmers to farm commercially and feed global supply chains.
Also featured on this platform is an upgraded version of the company’s first offering – a digital farming product named Digifarmer. With it, users can farm digitally and monitor the whole action on their mobile devices.
This version gives users more control in terms of selling their produce to buyers of their choice. Also, it offers greater transparency in the farming process, including post-harvest outcomes.
“We are bringing digital farming to the masses – from the bank teller in Lagos to the business executive in London,” CEO Desmond Koney noted.
The ultimate aim for Complete Farmer has always been to build an end-to-end platform for the three key stakeholders on the agriculture value chain; food growers, food buyers, and food lovers; getting these stakeholders interacting with each other in a manner that increases transparency and efficiency for them.
This new platform fights the issue of a fragmented supply chain, especially for agriculture in Africa, for the first time.
The various solutions will be consolidated under one central app for global users to partake in ensuring food security and represents the company’s vision to establish a world that eats better by working together. The app’s social features enable users from all over the globe to connect. Friends and family can own actual farms in Africa together by forming co-operatives.
The startup boasts of some impressive partners that enable it to deliver such value across the value chain. With some of the world’s best agrochemicals and seed companies, logistics and delivery companies, and quality control, certification, and insurance companies as partners, Complete Farmer is transforming agriculture production and distribution for its users.
Since incorporation, the company has successfully piloted a digital farming model with a total of 7,200 acres of total production serving about 55000 metric tons of commodities to buyers in Asia, Europe, and the rest of the world.
Currently, the complete farmer platform supports over 2000 acres of farmland across six regions in Ghana and is projected to expand its operations to Kenya and Togo this year.
Headquartered in Accra, Ghana, Complete Farmer is a portfolio company of MEST Africa.
The team pitched on stage at Techcrunch Battlefield Africa in 2018 and won Demo Africa in 2018. The company is planning on closing its Seed round in March 2021 to focus on its next stage of growth to scale across other value chains in Africa.