National: Vodafone Idea Foundation, the CSR arm of Vi, is expanding its transformational ‘SmartAgri’ project in the agri heartlands of Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Assam and Telangana. Launched in 2020, Vi CSR’s SmartAgri project brings together advanced technology interventions to help farmers improve their livelihood and adopt sustainable farming methods.
With the use of the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), and real-time technology solutions, SmartAgri provides farmers with information on critical elements to farming – like soil and air quality, wind, presence of insects and pests, and crop growth.
Farmers also receive real-time and localised advisories on critical Agri inputs for their crops and agricultural news on markets, government policies and schemes etc. They receive this in their regional languages via their mobile phones, with audio options, in case reading is a challenge.
SmartAgri project, launched in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh, is now getting expanded to four more States, empowering over 2.8 lakh farmers to gain 8-12 per cent higher yield and reduce costs by 15-20 per cent.
Commenting on the expansion of the SmartAgri project, P Balaji, Chief Regulatory & Corporate Affairs Officer, VIL, and Director, Vodafone Idea Foundation, said, “Agriculture remains the primary source of livelihood for 58 per cent of the Indian population, with 70 per cent of the rural household dependent on it. Using technology, Vodafone Idea Foundation’s SmartAgri project is transforming farming practices in India, instilling confidence in farmers to use technology and ‘intelligent’ solutions to improve productivity. Our technology intervention has resulted in increased yield, better crops and increased profits for the farmers bringing about a social impact in the Indian agriculture space We are now happy to further expand the project in the four states of Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Assam and Telangana, enabling over 2.8 lakh farmers to reap the benefits of this transformation.”
Vodafone Idea Foundation will now extend the technology interventions in farming to farmers in Uttar Pradesh (Hardoi, Lakhimpur), Rajasthan (Bundi, Kota, Tonk, Baran), Assam (Dibrugarh, Jorhat, Tinsukia, Udalguri) and Telangana (Adilabad).
SmartAgri also provides small farmers with physical assistance to incorporate sustainable agricultural practices to increase their yield. It has empanelled 125 tech-savvy young agri-entrepreneurs and 15 Farmer Producer Organisations (FPO) to assist the farmers and help them access vital information about their crops with ease.