Sourcetrace: Empowering Farmers To Make Agriculture Sustainable

CIO Vendor The agriculture industry in India, one of the primary sources of livelihood, is continually evolving. The transition from traditional subsistence to a more market aligned approach is leading to increased development and growth of the agricultural value chain for local and external markets. This in turn acts as a powerful tool for stabilizing rural income and addressing the challenge of food security in India. At the same time, there is an increasing pressure on government and businesses to redirect their focus to the resource and environment repercussions of the ever growing production, supply and consumption of agro-based products. However, in order to ensure sustainable development, the strategy should include producers, especially small farmers, in sourcing networks and initiatives that assist in meeting the stringent food safety and quality regulations demanded.

Reshaping the agricultural landscape is SourceTrace with its comprehensive suite of farmer centric solutions. “Our most important differentiating factor is not the technology but the fact that it is a planet-friendly technology. We focus on improving the quality of life of farmers, which results in increase in farmer income, better livelihood and social economic benefits while cutting down on the environmental degradation,” adds Venkat Moraju, CEO at SourceTrace. Recognized for the progress made in this sector, Venkat has won a myriad of prestigious awards including “entrepreneur of the year award” in 2016 by the Old Dominion University, Agri Startup Award in 2018 for the “Innovative model and excellence in Digital Platform” at the Agri Startup Convention in New Delhi, “Global CEO award” at the Global Agriculture Leadership Summit in New Delhi in 2018 and TiE Charter Member Achievement award in 2018.

In the current market scenario, small farmers are overpowered with all the upcoming big market forces. A meaningful aggregation of these farmers is required which would lend them the much needed bargaining power. SourceTrace helps make it easier for any organization to aggregate and work with them in a manner that would increase productivity, treat the farmers fairly and avail the right price.

Complete visibility from field to market
Headquartered in Massachusetts and having assisted clients across 28 countries, the company’s portfolio of innovative solutions include Farm Management, Farm Advisory Services, Certification, Monitoring and Evaluation, Traceability, Supply Chain Management, Market Linkage and
Financial Services. SourceTrace solutions have been designed and developed to proffer complete visibility from field to market. It also tracks the value chain at the source even in remote, low bandwidth environments. The platform helps capture all interactions at various touchpoints of the smallholder farmers at the field level for enhanced traceability and improved accountability of the value chain.

Having worked with a broad range of customers, Venkat goes on to tell us how when the clients first approach SourceTrace, they look for an efficient way of working and optimizing their operations. Prior to getting on board, the data is stored across various departments, siloed, thus reducing accessibility of a 360 degree view. SourceTrace comes to their aid and helps digitize the process, making the aggregation of data possible with a holistic view of information on the dashboard, helping make quicker real-time decisions. In conjunction with this, while the company extends a set of eight standard solutions, the client is extended the flexibility to decide on the parameters to solve the problems.

We focus on improving the quality of life of farmers, which results in increase in farmer income, better livelihood and social economic benefits while cutting down on the environmental degradation

Revolutionizing the lives of farmers
Venkat goes on to recount SourceTrace’s recent venture, partnering with the Department of Horticulture, Haryana. The company will be working with the department to implement the Digitization of the Agriculture Value Chain of the Small Farmers' Agri-Business Consortium Haryana (SFACH). This group operates in 140 horticulture clusters spread across 22 districts in Haryana. In effect, this solution, once deployed, will revolutionize the lives of 38,000 farmers by launching them on a global platform that would predominantly enable market linkage through the FPOs. SourceTrace's eServices Everywhere (ESE) Agri in this instance will be utilized to manage the farmer producer organisations for the development of the horticulture clusters. In addition to this, the farmers can leverage the crop and weather advisory services of the solution in order to reap additional benefits.

Venkat concludes with his plans for SourceTrace in the near future, “We are looking to strengthen our base in Southeast Asia, India, South America and Latin America. We are also looking at working with the meteorological department in Bangladesh to design a solution for weather forecast.”