The agricultural industry is experiencing a revolution globally. This is as a result of technovations that are ongoing in all sectors. In the past, agriculture was deemed as a job for the poor. Today, the narrative is different. It has become more attractive and fashionable to go into agriculture. With over 100 agro-based start-ups in Nigeria, several innovations have been infused into the crop production and crop delivery process in Nigeria.
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Despite the innovation experienced in the agricultural sector, we are yet to explore the best of digital farming. To say the least, there are a lot of lapses that are yet to be fixed even in the face of innovation and digital adoption. For example, the supply chain of food and crop production is faced with a transparent deficit. Further, data is short in supply. With the advent of blockchain technology, these lapses in the agricultural sector can be fixed.
To start with, what is blockchain technology? Euro Money defined Blockchain as a system of recording information in a way that makes it difficult or impossible to change, hack, or cheat the system. Each block in the chain contains several transactions, and every time a new transaction occurs on the blockchain, a record of that transaction is added to every participant’s ledger.
With the above mentioned definition, we shall examine 5 ways blockchain technology will boost input and output in the agricultural sector in Nigeria.
Elimination Of Bottleneck In Transactions And Fair Pricing
With the adoption of blockchain, farmers and buyers can access blockchain-powered apps or service providers to negotiate for reasonable prices of their goods. With blockchain, transactions can be done with ease, as digital payments can be made directly to the man on the farm without undue bottlenecks. This eliminates intermediaries and brokers. With the technology, farmers can own their goods and put them at an independent price. Also, the technology will distribute a ledger because, it shares information across many synchronized computer networks. This will better educate and connect Nigerians to the international market.
Decreases Human Error
Human error accounts for 43% of food waste in Africa. These errors consist of poor application of fertilizers, poor prevention of pests, hyper-application of pesticides, miscalculation of market price, erroneous plant diagnosis and so on. With the emergence of blockchain-controlled platforms, which helps in access to real-time data, farmers can get early warning signs, diagnose and treat plants, and have good recordkeeping of farm stocks. With these, there will be farming accuracy and reduction of food waste.
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With blockchain technology, you can trace diseased crops on time and eliminate them before they spread to the rest of the plantation. Also, spoilt or expired food can be traced with blockchain and removed from the shelf. Furthermore, with blockchain technology, there can be quick food responsiveness about a food’s origin, which can give a consumer what to expect. For example, a consumer can be armed with knowledge about where a crop is coming from, so that he can be prepared in terms of what to expect, such as quality and price.
Increased Access To Loans & Grants
Nigerian farmers face the problem of financial inclusion, such as access to loans and grants. With the emergence of blockchain, farmers can easily access loans, especially in rural areas where brick-and-mortar banks don’t exist. The bottlenecks of the traditional banking sector will drastically reduce, while there will be increased access to loans and grants, which help modernise agriculture. With the technology, mobile banking will help farmers keep track of their financing through a blockchain ledger. It will be of help to both farmers and investors who can have access to farmers’ financial history and build trust in the system.
Used In Crop Insurance
Nigerian farmers are always faced with the unpredictability of weather and locusts, and other pests are facilitated by weather change. This occasionally destroys their plants, as they do not get early warning signs that adequately help them to prepare. Most often, during the time of a season, locust usually invades the farms of Nigerian farmers. But with early warning signs apps like Plantix, farmers are prepared to counter locust invasion, which can ensure their plantation.
Featured Image Source: EOS Intelligence
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