28 Oct Mastercard partners LEAF to digitise agri-value chain
Mastercard partners LEAF to digitise agri-value chain
Helps connect farmers with buyers
Mastercard has partnered with Lawrencedale Agro Processing India (LEAF) to launch LEAF Farmer Network (LFN), a digital platform to improve financial assess and inclusion among the farmers in the country.
LFN will empower farmers across Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu with digitisation of harvest data, enhance access to markets, provide expertise on better crops, and importantly, bring in transparency by connecting directly with buyers.
“The agrarian ecosystem players are hampered by lack of transparent access with actionable information. Digitisation solves this challenge by integrating a virtuous loop between farmers and markets, giving better access to information. We are delighted to partner with Mastercard to take forward our years of work in bringing about a positive change in the livelihood of marginalised farmers,” said Palat Vijayaraghavan, Founder & CEO, LEAF, said in a statement.
LFN will bring in access to good quality produce at scale, enable price negotiation with complete transparency and manage end-to-end logistics with quality control. The entire process is managed by farmers, with support from LFN agents.
“The core of LFN is digitising the produce buying process. It is a high-touch model through a dedicated on-ground farmer advisory and change management team. It is enabled by a rural relevant, secure phone-driven and internet agnostic technology provided by Mastercard,” Vijayaraghavan said.
LFN will digitise marketplaces, payments, workflows, and farmer transaction histories by connecting buyers, farming inputs, suppliers, ag-techs, and banks with FPOs/farmers, helping to create a commercially sustainable ecosystem comprising all relevant agriculture value chain players with equitable commercial exchange mechanisms.
Doubling farm income
This initiative will also support the farmers through comprehensive training and capacity building in entire lifecycle of the harvest, including post-harvest management to reduce wastage.
“LFN will leverage the power of digital technologies to bring together key stakeholders across the agri value chain to ensure that farmers get direct access to the knowledge, skills and markets that they currently lack. Together with LEAF, Mastercard is delighted that this initiative will have a tangible positive impact on farmers’ earnings, supporting the Union government’s goal of doubling farmers’ income in the coming two years,” said Nikhil Sahni, Division President, South Asia, Mastercard.
The launch of LFN is an extension of Mastercard Farm Pass, a pilot programme that was introduced in 2018 in Andhra Pradesh. Farm Pass is a pivotal component of Community Pass, a shared, interoperable digital infrastructure for the rural population that facilitates access to critical services and minimises costs. Today, Farm Pass supports 600,000 farmers across India and East Africa, helping to raise incomes by 25-50 per cent for many farmers.