My name is Mustapha Ismail, and I am 27 years old. I studies Statistics and I belong to the ICT unit of GreenWealth Agripreneurs.
GreenWealth Agripreneurs is a group in Ibadan, Nigeria, comprised of young individuals of multi-disciplinary backgrounds. Most of us are graduates between the ages of 22 and 30 who have come together as a result of our passion for agriculture and to create employment for ourselves while encourage rural youth’s involvement in agribusiness.
We have undergone several trainings on different agricultural value chains which have exposed us to various agribusiness opportunities, one of which is Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in agribusiness.
The ICT team of the GreenWealth Agripreneurs has a goal of generating income through service delivery to farmers using ICT tools in order to reduce their cost of production and increase their yield.
Technology continues to advance in many industries, and this is also true in agriculture, where farmers continually endeavor to make the most of their land and resources. Advances in precision agriculture, with the latest innovations in drone technology, GPS mapping and all its applications in the field, are helping farmers tighten their profit margins and operate more efficiently, and to do so with greater ease than ever before.
Drones are an important instrument in achieving precision agriculture without buying expensive machinery. A drone can get around all the areas of your farm quicker than you can drive or walk over the ground that you need to cover.
Our motivation is traced back to our findings that farmers, no matter how big or small their farms are, usually aim to increase productivity at lower costs. While all farmers know the value of scouting their crops, few actually have the time to cover the acres/hectares on foot.
Among the confirmed benefits of our services to farmers are that farmers are now able to gather types of data that were previously unreachable, and in turn make needed changes during the same growing season. Seeing a crop from the air can reveal patterns that expose many things from irrigation problems to soil variation and even pest and disease infestations that are not apparent at eye level.
Also, using the data gathered from drones, farmers can now improve their yields, apply fertilizer, water, or chemicals only where they are needed, map their fields, monitor crop health, check for signs of disease, and save time in the process.
To achieve the project goal the following activities will be implemented:
- Continuous sensitization of farmers on the need for precision farming
- Setup a functional monitoring and evaluation system for results-based management
- Proper accounting of revenue generated
- Document lessons learned and reflect on them
Presently, we have one drone and we charge $20 per service delivery to rural farmers and $60 per day for research institute projects that leads to higher productivity at lower costs. However, we look forward to scaling up by securing more drones so as to meet the demand from farmers and agricultural research institutes requesting our services.
Percentage decrease in cost of farm management and increase in yield per hectare are the measurable success factors for our project. This is being measured by indicators that track the cost of field management and yield per hectare of our beneficiaries/customers (farmers) before and after they are receiving our services for managing their field effectively and efficiently with drone technology
We will buy two additional drones for $2,000 each and two Samsung Android phones for $200 each that will be connected to the drones for rendering services. The other $600 will serve for logistics. All these will be purchased within the first 3 months after which they will be fully serving the purpose of complimenting the one drone we have to meet high demand from target customers.
Blogpost and picture submitted by Mustapha Ismail (Nigeria) – greenwealthagripreneurs[at]gmail.com
The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.
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