The link is the thing! Agro-Marketing Platform (AMP) Uganda is all about connecting smallholder farmers to a wider market. This is where agro-input providers and producers can place their products to get clients without the hurdles of middlemen.
Aware that farming careers have to be rewarding and attractive, AMP Uganda’s aim is to create a market link portal for smallholder farmers for increased income and sustainable livelihoods.
Who are we?
The AMP Uganda project is proposed by Ocen Godwin, 27 years old and a citizen of Uganda, living in the northern region of the country. Godwin is a SET Africa fellow, which he was awarded for his social entrepreneurship venture in youth development through Aruabits, an Information and Communication Technology (ICT) flagship venture. He has a Bachelor’s in Information Technology and Post-Graduate M&E Certificate.
AMP Uganda: What and Why?
Agriculture employs 85% of Uganda’s population and the country’s producers are rural-based smallholder farmers who often do not enjoy the benefit of their hard work. Why?
- Limited markets for surplus produce
- Limited knowledge of prevailing market prices
- Unfair practices of middlemen
Starting a career rotates around two core issues: Is what am venturing in rewarding? Is it attractive?! Knowing that the above scenarios undermine production because smallholder farmers do not enjoy much reward for their sweat, AMP Uganda is envisioning farming as a rewarding and attractive career path by leveraging Information Technology to link input and output dealers to a wider market.
With a fully developed and functioning AMP Uganda farmers can sign up, place their produce online, get SMS alerts on market prices and trade globally to get value for their products. Clients can buy using the online cart/store and pay for products directly and get their products shipped instantly.
With this arrangement, smallholder farmers will have the opportunity to mobilize in a group and supply in bulk depending on their clients’ demands.
To achieve our targets
AMP Uganda intends to design, develop and implement an electronic (online) platform through which farmers and input dealers can sign up, place products and get clients.
We also intend to run marketing campaigns targeting agro-input dealers, farmers and farming groups/promoters to use the platform to reach their bigger clients.
Furthermore, cooperative liaison centers and other potential markets will be crucial to our link with farmers and input dealers. Using relevant sources to collect and compile market information to enable farmers to receive SMS alerts on prevailing market prices will also be important.
As we embark on this journey, the platform’s system prototype has already been designed and technical development team set. The prototype was informed by a baseline survey that was conducted to establish the state of affairs and how to refine the platform to suit usability and interaction functions. Social media pages on Facebook and Twitter already been set up and activated.
To establish the extent to which AMP Uganda is increasing marketing opportunity for farmers, we will base our standards of success on:
- Number of farmers who generated client leads through the platform
- Number of farmers using the platform
- Number of clients buying from AMP Uganda
For this ambitious and motivating project to succeed, AMP Uganda will invest USD $5000 to facilitate:
- Technical requirements (programming, security and hosting space): USD $2800
- Marketing and publicity: USD $900
- SMS system operation for bulk messaging: USD $800
- Operation and project management: USD $500
Blogpost and picture submitted by Ocen Godwin (AMP Uganda) – oponggodwin[at]gmail.com
The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.
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