Agriculture is the engine behind the food that we get served on our plates everyday. It is something beautiful, a lifestyle, but something fragile as well. At the moment agriculture faces more challenges than ever before.
Climate change, a growing world population, and unpredictable market fluctuations make a farmers' life more difficult than ever. More than 900 million farmers are currently struggling to make a living and are living in poverty.
In Myanmar 37 million people (that is 70 percent of the population) are (in)directly dependent on farming. The mobile phone penetration is estimated at 80 percent, and 70 percent of the smallholder farmers are connected to the internet through their mobile phone. This means that there is an immense opportunity to easily reach an enormous group of people all over the country, region and world. Therefore Impact Terra was established. In 2016 Erwin Sikma founded the organisation with the idea to leverage technology to create a lasting impact for farmers.
A thriving and sustainable smallholder agriculture sector
To digitally empower smallholder farmers around the world
The way we do this is through our digital services platform Golden Paddy, consisting of a mobile application, web application and a Facebook page. We optimise the Golden Paddy platform for our beneficiaries, based on the crop they grow, the location they live in and other characteristics. Besides farmers, we see extension workers (government, NGOs, private sector) as our end-users; because we perceive all stakeholders in the agricultural value chains as potential clients.
We now work in Myanmar but are planning to expand our reach to Thailand and Vietnam, other SEA countries and eventually globally.
Golden Paddy and the Sustainable Development Goals
Golden Paddy lifts millions of smallholder farmers out of poverty as they can use the information and services on the platform to increase their income, be independent, and resilient.
Golden Paddy enables farmers to increase food productivity and informs about sustainable food production. Moreover, the support in diversification of crops and safe food production contributes to eliminating world hunger.
Golden Paddy empowers millions of women in smallholder farming households due to equal access to information and services.
Decent Work and Economic Growth
Golden Paddy empowers all agricultural value chains by providing information, services, and data-driven solutions for challenges faced by farmers and other agricultural stakeholders.
Golden Paddy reduces economic and social inequality as all farmers, including women and disadvantaged groups, have equal access to data-driven tech solutions to improve their livelihoods.
Golden Paddy creates climate awareness through the information provided on the platform.
Moreover the platform includes an early warning system for extreme weather conditions in order to improve climate adaptations when necessary.
SHARING OUR VISION:
BILL & MELINDA GATES FOUNDATION
Fortunately, we are not the only one with this vision anymore! We started out in 2016 to improve the lives of millions of farmers. Fortunately, more eyes are being opened on all fronts to support this goal.
Below is the Digital Strategy from the Agricultural Development Program by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation that largely shares our values, goals, vision and objective.