Business News/ Industry / Agriculture/  Agritech can solve farm sector challenges: UNCDF-NITI Aayog Report

NEW DELHI: Some of the critical challenges in the farm sector that lead to loss of income for farmers, including inadequacies in production, supply chain, weather risk and climate change, offer a unique opportunity to agritech start-ups, according to a report published by UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) and NITI Aayog.

The report said that agritech start-ups can find ways to solve the problems faced by smallholder farmers who produce more than 50-60% of agricultural output in lower-middle and lower-income countries. These solutions can bring efficiency across the value chain, the report said.

UNCDF and NITI Aayog are currently collaborating on an 'agritech challenge' initiative aimed at fostering cross-border partnerships to tackle development challenges and enhance the financial well-being of communities.

The agritech challenge seeks to promote business collaborations and knowledge sharing through sustainable investments, driving south-south collaboration. This will be achieved by supporting pilot projects in new markets, creating platforms for knowledge exchange between start-ups and incubators and encouraging investments in high-potential start-ups for expansion in new markets, said the report titled 'Gearing up to solve food security challenges.'

The 'agritech challenge' initiative recognises the critical role of agriculture in emerging economies across Asia and Africa. The farm sector employs over one billion people globally, with more than 50% of medium, small, and micro enterprises in these economies engaged in the sector. Smallholders who own less than two hectares of land make up 82% of total agricultural land holdings and play a vital role in driving productivity, the report said.

Approximately 49% of farmland is located in low-middle-income or low-income countries. Smallholders produce more than 50-60% of agricultural output in lower-middle and lower-income countries. The initiative emphasizes the importance of sustained growth in agriculture to fuel economic growth, maintain livelihoods, and ensure food self-sufficiency in many emerging economies.

Gireesh Chandra Prasad
Gireesh has over 22 years of experience in business journalism covering diverse aspects of the economy, including finance, taxation, energy, aviation, corporate and bankruptcy laws, accounting and auditing.
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Updated: 22 Apr 2023, 03:54 PM IST
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