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Amazon Retail launches agronomy services to empower farmers

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In its latest initiative to empower farmers, Amazon Retail has launched its agronomy services that will help to create and build an ecosystem through a combination of agronomist-driven field interventions and farm management tools besides also helping to track the impact of such interventions. This initiative will enable farmers to get timely advice and make accurate decisions on actions required for their crops, have access to machine learning technology for better produce and build a robust supply chain infrastructure.

Speaking of the initiative, Sameer Khetarpal, Director, Grocery, Food and Health, Amazon India, said: “We are excited by the role we can play in empowering Indian farmers and the agricultural community through pioneering technology that improves farm yield and quality of fruits and vegetables. This is a holistic program that enables farmers to use scientific crop planning based on soil and weather conditions, and provides inputs on crop and disease management. We are humbled with the acceptance from farmers to adapt and learn tech-led simplified solutions that help them in fast decision-making and see improved results from the farm. We plan to continuously improve efficiency of the program and create new modules that will benefit Indian farmers and provide freshest produce to the customers.”

As part of the initiative, each enrolled farmer partner is onboarded on the farm management tool to provide timely intervention that farmers need and value. The team of qualified Agronomists offer Agritech expertise to registered farmer
partners for better farm yield and improved product quality. Along with it, the Agronomists provide a comprehensive scientific and precise advisory to the farmers. The program includes proactive and reactive crop plans: Proactive crop plan is based on scientific crop and soil management practices and is aimed to get better yield and quality; Reactive crop plan is an intervention-based initiative where farmers can raise alerts on pests, diseases etc., and get remedial solutions for their farm problems. Currently, 80% of on-boarded farmers have access to a personalized Crop Plan on their mobile app with an ability to raise reactive crop related queries and get resolution as and when needed.

The second offering of the Amazon Retail agronomy services is an application- interface through machine learning and computer-vision based algorithms that simplifies supply chain processes, helps farmers to identify defects (rotting, spots, cuts, mold) in fruits and vegetables, reduces wastage of produce, which in
turn will help in ensuring that customers get the best quality of fruits and vegetables.

Amazon Retail is investing to leveraging state-of-art technology to build a robust temperature-controlled supply chain infrastructure that reduces shrinkage and provides freshest quality to customers. Amazon Retail associates use technology to inspect and monitor quality at multiple stages once the produce is
sourced from farmers and dispatched to the processing centers. The fresh produce (fruits and vegetable) is then sorted, graded, and packed in different sizes at the processing centers and dispatched to Amazon Fresh fulfilment centers located closer to customers. The fulfilment centers operates with 4 separate temperature zones (Ambient, Tropical, Chilled and Frozen) to maintain the quality and freshness of produce.

Darshan Daulat Khandagle, a farmer from Manjarwadi, Maharashtra who has used the agronomy service from Amazon Retail, says: “I have been enrolled in the agronomy services from Amazon for cauliflower and have been getting regular visits from a qualified expert for guidance. I also get a growing plan in my app and can raise alerts whenever I notice something unusual in the farm. Last season, the quality of the crop improved due to right actions at the right time helping me earn more”

Amazon Retail believes that technology is going to play a critical role in enabling Agriculture in this decade and is committed to making the best of its Agritech capabilities available to the farmers to help them improve their farm outcomes. The company will continue serving customers through quality, value
and convenience.