What problem are you trying to solve?
There are 500 million small-scale farms worldwide, employing more than 2 billion people. These farms grow 80% of the food consumed on earth, and yet they are located in isolated rural areas and 90% still have no access to the internet. They are therefore cut off from vital agricultural advice and new ideas to help resolve the many challenges they face and, most importantly, improve their prosperity. Being cut off from the information, products and services they need, means that over 30% of the food that small-scale farmers produce is lost at ground level. As a result, many struggle to feed their families, let alone invest in their future.
With the world’s population projected to grow from 7 to 9 billion by 2050 and climate change affecting arable land worldwide, increased pressure on the global food supply will only increase. So this a problem not just for farmers and their families, but for every single person on earth.
What is your solution to this problem?
90% of small-scale farmers DO have access to a basic mobile phone and no one knows more about farming than farmers themselves. Each day, farmers create new ways to stay one step ahead of every challenge they face. And yet they have no way to share this valuable knowledge with other farmers. Until now….
Wefarm is the world’s FIRST and LARGEST peer-to-peer knowledge sharing service for offline farming communities. Our service empowers farmers to share and access the vital farming information they need, when they need it most, for FREE. Our growth in this offline market is unprecedented – our network of nearly 1m farmers is now growing by over 3k farmers a day (it took 5 months to reach our first 3k users in 2015). Most importantly, Farmers use Wefarm a LOT – >30% actively contribute content every month (compared to Twitter’s 17%) with 90% retention after 90 days (compared to WhatsApp’s 77%). And it really WORKS. 70% of farmers report improved prosperity since using Wefarm.
What is your latest update on your innovation?
On track to reach 2m farmers by early 2019, we are now building THE digital ecosystem for global agriculture, with farmers at the centre. Smallholders may be unconnected, but they spend more than $400 billion a year on inputs (like seeds or fertilizer) and financial services. Despite their considerable collective spending power, they still have a significant, unmet need for bespoke, data-driven products, services and markets. Companies still lack actionable insight about the farmers in their highly valuable supply chains and struggle to reach this multi-billion dollar market. Wefarm’s existing, fast grow highly trusted service provides a unique opportunity to serve both sides of this equation. Our ecosystem will provide farmers with access to ALL they need to prosper. We will generate substantial revenue from providing companies, NGOs and governments with insight about smallholders and connecting companies to this multi-million dollar market they currently struggle to reach.