GFAR blog

YAP Proposal #211: CropVee: A mobile app for diagnosing plant diseases (Stephen Olawale, Nigeria)


My name is Omotoso Olawale Stephen, 23, a savvy enthusiast for technology. I’m a software developer who is becoming a “go-to person” for developing software solutions to solve the vast problems in agriculture.

I studied biochemistry at the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo state. I hail from Ekiti State in Nigeria, a part of the country where the major occupation is farming.

I served in leadership roles during my tenure as the financial secretary of the Nigerian Society of Biochemistry Students, FUTA Chapter, and have gained experience in planning and directing executive-level administrative affairs. This work demanded combining planning, organizational and communications skills with the ability to independently plan and direct high-level business affairs.

I’m an analytical, intelligent, organized and resourceful individual who is recognized as a consummate team player and innovative problem solver. I am a quick study who seeks and enjoys new challenges and excels at exceeding established objectives, is highly flexible, and reacts quickly and effectively to corporate changes and challenges.

While studying Biochemistry as an undergraduate, I became fascinated by the scope and application of biochemistry to agriculture, including development and exploitation of better genotypes, post- harvest physiology of fruit crops and vegetables, nutritional quality, biochemistry of disease and pest resistance and developments in the field of inter-mediatory metabolism, i.e. synthesis and degradation of the constituents of living tissues.

These aspects of biochemistry inspired my interest in solution-driven projects so that I could exploreg and deploy my knowledge in the aforementioned areas using software technology.

Due to my family background, I have always been close to the farms and farmers, which made me take note of the great threat posed by plant diseases to reliable and increased production of foods.

The accurate detection and diagnosis of the various diseases affecting plants at an early stage is an important factors in increasing both qualitative and quantitative crop yield. So many farmers do random guessing of diseases based on their experience and the experiences and opinions of other farmers around them.

This obsolete way of diagnosing plant diseases usually results in greater losses for the farmer when a disease is mistaken for another and the wrong cure is applied. In light of this problem, it is important for farmers to possess an effective and sustainable disease diagnostic technique that is easily accessible to them.

I propose CropVee, a comprehensive mobile database app aimed at helping farmers diagnose and identify various diseases affecting their plants simply by taking a picture of the affected parts.

The mobile app uses image processing through pixel comparison to find similar-looking diseases on the affected parts of the plant and generates possible options for treatment of the identified diseases. The app will also include the option to contact a team of experts for consultation and further research on the diseases of concern.

The mobile app will be a cross-platform app with an aggressive app marketing plan. It will be made available for download at all the different mobile app stores, which tackles the need for an easily accessible solution for any kind of mobile user (i.e. windows, iPhone or android users). It will generate income through a subscription-based model in which users are requested to subscribe for the continuous use of the app after a trial period of 10 days.

During the trial period, users are able to access all the features of the app excluding the option to consult a team of experts. The creation of this app, its creative marketing and its availability to farmers gives an assurance of a more effective means of controlling plant diseases. The mobile app will be made easily accessible for small-scale farmers, large-scale farmers and research institutes to make plant disease diagnosis an easy task.

The steps involved in developing and perfecting CropVee include the careful compilation and digitization of a comprehensive database on existing plant diseases and the subsequent integration of the database into the mobile app. The mobile app is then developed, tested and made available on the different mobile app platforms.

As an alumnus of the Federal University of Technology, Akure, I’ve been able to speak with several educational experts and students in this field who want to practice and are interested in dealing with real-life challenges with hands-on solutions. I have also spoken with staff of the cocoa processing industry in Akure, Ondo State Nigeria, to understand the challenges faced by this sector and the particular problem resulting from plant diseases. They have agreed to help with the comprehensive compilation of the required data.

The success of CropVee will be measured by the availability of the app on the different mobile app stores and the total number of downloads. I also plan to use Google Analytics to measure interest generated by the online marketing campaign platforms. I plan to leverage the network of young agro-entrepreneurs and farmers, organic farm organizations, Springboard Nigeria and the Youth Coalition for Grassroots Development to market the app directly to prospective users.

The USD $5000 will be budgeted as follows:

USD $1000 will be payment to professionals and assistants for the compilation and digitalization of a comprehensive database of known plant diseases for a duration of two months.

The development and distribution of the mobile app to the different mobile app stores (which will also take two months) will cost a sum of USD $1500.

Marketing the mobile app through different marketing channels such as social media related campaigns, google search and display network ads like site posters, banners and video animations will cost USD $1200 over a period of 12 months (averaging US $100 per month).

USD $700 will be spent on business name registration.

The remaining USD $800 will be set aside for operational cost such as transport, internet services and other miscellaneous costs.

Due to the nature of this product, operations can be carried out from my home and as such will not require renting an office. The development of the functioning and fully tested mobile app will be complete and available for downloads at the different app stores at the end of 5 months.

CropVee is a great way to improve agricultural productivity and above all, inspire more youth to get into agriculture. The introduction of information and communication technology into agriculture will inspire and encourage youth in agriculture due to the fast and easily accessible means of diagnosing plant diseases.

In my experience with youth who are interested in going into agriculture, they are usually discouraged with the old, manual, slow and stressful means of dealing with farming problems. I believe that this project will help inspire youth in agriculture.


Blogpost and picture submitted by Stephen Olawale (Ekiti, Nigeria) – omotosoolawale16[at]

The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.

This post is published as proposal #211 of “YAP” – our “Youth Agripreneur Project”.

The first selection of the winners will be based on the number of comments, likes and views each proposal gets.

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“YAP” is part of the #GCARD3 process, the third Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development.

640 thoughts on “YAP Proposal #211: CropVee: A mobile app for diagnosing plant diseases (Stephen Olawale, Nigeria)”

  1. This is such a great idea! However, here in the Philippines, most farmers in very rural areas do not have access to technology. So, that’s unfortunate for the farmers here. But I really like your idea!

    1. Thanks for your comment, I’m of the opinion that development is a step by step process, with the help of extension workers, network of research institute and agricultural development agencies, we can introduce technology to them and train them in view of helping their farms and productivity grow, I would love to say, you also can be the help the people need, would you like to make use of the app and help introduce it to more people?

      1. of course! I’m taking up a bachelor’s in agricultural biotechnology, and I’ve had two courses on crop protection, so yeah, I’d love to try the app 🙂

      2. I love this idea and as an extension worker, I would really love to tell people about this

    2. I can see Olawale is a youth with a mission, to integrate technology into agriculture, that’s nice

  2. Wow, Mr Wale has indeed taken a vital step towards developing Agriculture in Nigeria and world, at large. Let’s give him all the required supports.

    1. People who knows Olawale and how much he loves technology shouldn’t be amazed , I’m sure he can make this a reality, nice work bro

  3. Thank you so much, it’s a great step in moving agriculture forward and making making the world a better place to live which I stand for

    1. Thank you so much for taking us to the next level of technology in agriculture in Africa specifically

      1. Thank you for your comment, since the world is really moving faster towards technology, I believe Africa shouldn’t be left out

  4. Its a great idea, one which will serve us better especially the youth which are interested in going into agriculture but don’t want to get involve in outdated or stressful farming processes, its an easily accessible means of diagnosis. Research has shown that there are so many of these plant diseaes and various preventive measures are discovered day by day, how do you plan to cope with this daily changes?

    1. Periodic upgrades would be made available with notifications on the mobile app when they are available which will help update the app database with new plant diseases discovered by research institutes

      1. I think periodic upgrades is an awesome idea to keep up with constant update

    2. I would love to advice you to work closely with research institute because they would help you with updated database of plant diseases

      1. Thank so much for your comment, we’ve had discussions with educational professional and I believe we would do more because the viability of this project depends on being current with the latest information

  5. Agriculture is really one of the way forward in Nigeria… its really cool the youth are trying everything to make it work…..kudos…

    1. Thanks so much for your comment, agriculture is a great sector that provides so much employment, that’s why we need the youth

      1. You can include adverts for some pesticide and agrochemicals, that would also serve as revenue

    1. Thanks for your comment, I believe if everyone can support, we can all make the world a better place to live with comfort ability and enough food supply

      1. If we tackle diseases, harvest would increase quantitatively, nice help to the farmers bro

      2. Cool idea, increased productivity through elimination of plant diseases is our goal in africa

      1. I’m so glad that lots of farmers are showing interest, thanks for your comment

    1. Thanks so much for your comment and I really appreciate your help in pointing out that not only farmers can make use of it, individuals who just need some information on one or few things about some plants could even make use of it

    1. Experienced developers would be employed to develop an easily accessible user interface and made available on all mobile app stores

  6. Nice idea, some diseases are common in some part of the country and some aren’t, how do you plan to deal with this?

    1. All diseases not neglecting any plant of the country would be included on the database

  7. This is a fantastic idea, very unique, most of those I’ve seen on this blog is this farming and that farming. May i ask if this mobile app isn’t gonna be too complex to access by farmers?

    1. Cropvee would possess an easily accessible and familiar interface which would not be complex in any form for users, users would love the design and navigation, this would improve the usability of the app

  8. Its a great idea but I’m concerned about the different camera which will be used on different phones by different users

  9. Its an awesome thing to have someone create something to combat stress on the farm but I hope it will be available on all smartphones?

    1. Thanks so much for your comment, lets join hands and make the world a better place

    1. Thanks so much for your comment, I’m ready to give this project all it takes to make it a success

  10. Such a powerful and great idea. As a crop scientist I think this idea should not go to waste or swept under a carpet because issues of crop diseases is not what farmers should joke with. Mr olawale I can’t wait to have your mobile app right here on my phone, Please let’s support his idea. God bless!

    1. Thanks so much for the comment, I believe you would really enjoy the use of the app when its out on the different mobile app stores

  11. As an extension worker, i think its an awesome idea, the farmers would be fascinated seeing something new

  12. its awesome but i hope you are working on talking to professionals on plant diseases to help you out with the compilation of databse

  13. It is an interesting proposal and the best for our agricultural sector but the question is, how will our farmers in rural areas who are not expose to technology be able to be aware of this development in agriculture and also be able to use it?

    1. With the help of extension workers and our marketing teams, we can help introduce technology to them and let them know it is meant to improve their standard and increase productivity

  14. This is nice and innovating…yea. ..but the inventor of this innovation needs to consider the fact that the first contributor made. There is an almost total level of illiteracy in the average nigerian farmer. …how would they welcome this high tech technique when they are not used to even the simplest of phones. … You would need to do a great overhauling of their ideas first.

    1. With the help of extension workers, I believe we can go a long way, the sky is our limit and we would ensure the highest level of simplicity in designing the user interface of the app which will improve accessibility.

  15. Agriculture is very important….it helps in building nations economy….this will really help, tho

    1. Agriculture is what we depend on from where I come from, so we have to develop it and help increase productivity

  16. This is a great idea….this is one of those things we need in our nation…application of oour knowledge to improve our lives

    1. We plan to use extension workers, social media campaigns, google adwords and video animations describing the features of the mobile app

  17. This is a great idea, let people out there know this; advertise, show-up and disclose more to them

    1. Thanks so much for your comment, we would dedicate a lot to marketing and making sure almost all farmers know of this project

  18. This is one of the things we need to open our eye on and not petroleum alone. Good luck

  19. All eyes are open to seeing this app, we need stuff that will work effectively. Will this app be beneficial to educated and uneducated farmers?

  20. As an extension worker, I think this mobile would be greatly accepted because it makes life easier

  21. Thanks for taking us to the next level of technology in agriculture in Africa… I really appreciate it

    1. that is correct because the app will include more information about the discovered diseases

  22. Honesly what makes me read your proposal is just the idea of your mobile app cos its gonna help spread every info abt d agric and encourage our youth

    1. i will work closely with so many advertisement platforms auch as social media marketing campaigns and site banners, posters . also agricultural development agencies

    1. during app development, the database shall be integrated and i will be working closely with sophisticated developers to ensure a good work

  23. Olawale is my secondary school mate and ever since then he’s been in love with computers, nice work bro

  24. the first time you told me about this, i though it was a joke, you inspire me my brother

  25. this should give birth to more and more inovation and more integration of ict into agriculture

  26. Great thoughts and mind blowing idea. Such type of a[[ are important for the promotion of agricultural sector because only the agricultural sector will improve the economical status of the nation.

  27. I appreciate for your initiation. Know how on subject is stepping stone for entrepreneurship. All the best young guys.

  28. You have tried to work on the most important aspect of agro entrepreneurship in Nigeria. I hope this proposal will be approved and you have a challenging task to perform in Nigeria.
    Good Luck

  29. its very much appreciative idea concept, which helps to open new horizon for young farmers and entrepreneurs. we wish for the success of the program. thank you

  30. Good initiation. ..
    It’s our pride….
    Applicable to all kinds of plants
    Make it accessible to all…

  31. Great one. This will for sure help youth to get engage, empowering them with leadership skills and many more, for better agriculture, research and development.

  32. Cropvee is great app and it seems like it has wide prospects in our country, and it seems like it will attain wider prospects in future days.

  33. i am an agriculturist and i think its going to be a great development towards Agriculture as our Government is planning to improve on our economy through agriculture

  34. i believe this app will help be of great help towards improving the face of agriculture….!thumbs up man

  35. Given the current economy, improved agriculture is needed and this is a helping hand

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