Although 70% of India’s population depends directly or indirectly on agriculture for livelihood, India’s farmers are mostly unaware of advances in agricultural technology. This is where mKRISHI, a mobile application developed by the Tata Trusts with the help of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), comes in.
Aiding the last-mile technology transfer to the farmers, mKRISHI provides the latest agricultural university-recommended practices, pest alerts and weather updates directly to a farmer’s mobile handset via SMS, calls and IVR. A toll-free number has been set up in order to allow farmers to send in their queries as needed. The entire system is backed by existing field staff in project areas, and agri-experts / consultants who act as quality checks for the information that's being sent out.
Currently, more than 400,000 farmers across Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Maharashtra have signed onto the mKRISHI platform. Crop information for cotton, groundnut, onions, basmati rice, wheat, red gram and soya is being disseminated through messages and voice recordings.
The Trusts now focus on running small-scale agri-businesses on the mKRISHI platform. Further enhancements are being made to the mKRISHI app with the help of TCS in order to replicate an e-commerce platform; the intent is to drive four agri-businesses on this platform. A producer company model to focus on service delivery is being explored.
- The mKRISHI programme resulted in 200,000 farmers in Punjab and Tamil Nadu receiving year-round timely information on best agricultural practices and pest/disease outbreak alerts.
- In Gujarat, mKRISHI provided extension services to over 123,000 farmers.
- In Maharashtra, 113,614 farmers from 608 villages across 7 districts of Vidarbha registered on the mKRISHI platform to receive timely agricultural advice during the cropping season.
- Currently, nine crop protocols, including cotton, wheat, rice, and soybean are on mKRISHI.
Area of operation: Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Maharashtra
Leh Livelihood Initiative
Sujalam Sufalam Initiative
Integrated Productivity Management in Cropping Systems, Punjab
Ending burning of crop stubble through Happy Seeder technology
Coastal Salinity Prevention and Mitigation
Sukhi Baliraja Initiative
Lakhpati Kisan Initiative
Transforming Rural India Initiative
Mising Autonomous Council (MAC) Collaborative Project
System of Rice Intensification Initiative
Sakh se Vikas (Development through micro-finance)