We have a deep insight into agriculture. One of our co-founders has been an amateur urban farmer for the last 30 years. He had cultivated button mushrooms commercially for three years in the early 1990s on the river bed of Yamuna. He was then involved in growing aromatic plants for three years and now runs a farm share project in Odisha where he grows indigenous varieties of rice and pluses. The farms were able to limit production cost to about Rs 65 per Kg in the first year of moving to sustainable agriculture while the retail cost of organic rice hovered around Rs 85 a Kg. He is actively involved in gathering various data points in the farm share to promote evidence based practices. He was also instrumental in building a pathbreaking agro-advisory system called Phoenix.
A couple of engagements worthy of mention are:
Nutrition Stick: We built a mobile application to take inputs like length and density of grass at different locations via nutrition stick using Bluetooth technology. This data was then used to calculate current energy availability, and a trend analysis was done using past data to analyse possible energy availability to help predict shortfalls beforehand.
Phoenix: This was a mobile based agro-advisory start-up which had some great initial traction but fizzled out due to lack of funding. This system allowed farmers to choose various parameters related to land topography and the crops they wished to grow based on which a customized advisory bundle was processed which could then be downloaded to phone and run offline. It gave advisory based on plant life cycle – for instance, a certain bug may cause disease to a plant only during the cotyledon stage. It had much of the advisory in pictorial format and used native variants allowing easier identification.
Our involvement in product development included UX Design and doing competitive landscaping.