Combating poverty through increasing supply chain transparency

by | May 3, 2022 | Business Experiences, Sustainability, Technology

It’s a real pleasure to share with you what has recently become a new chapter in my life. After finishing my previous journey, I decided to take a longer break to think about the next phase of my life. I concluded that I want to make a positive impact in this world. Last December I joined AgUnity, a technology provider creating digital solutions that integrate remote farming communities into global supply chains. I started as a senior business advisor to support the executive team in defining the next year’s growth strategy. Recently we have concluded to continue our cooperation and I have joined the executive team as Chief Growth Officer. Together, we aim to combat poverty amongst millions of smallholder farmers with easy to use and trustworthy mobile technology.

Making this world a better place

While considering my next step, I concluded I would only join a company or organization that aims to improve things in this world. Today, this is even more essential than before.

The United Nations has defined Sustainable Development Goals and the first goal aims to “End poverty in all its forms everywhere”. Most people facing extreme poverty, are smallholder farmers in the developing countries. These people, who produce the essentials for a lot of our food, spices, and delicacies, live in remote rural areas, the so called “Last Mile”. By connecting them with the rest of the world, we aim to empower them to achieve economic inclusion so they, their families and their communities can prosper and thrive.

Empowering the smallholder farmer

The smallholder farmers are an integral part of global supply chains. At the same time, “Last Mile” communities still lack tools for proof of identity, trustworthy records of sale of produce and access to basic goods and services like credit, education, and healthcare.

The solution? An affordable, easy to use, secure and transparent mobile phone application. Through blockchain and smartphone technology we connect ‘the last mile’ farmers and communities in developing nations. We offer solutions in an understandable and affordable way, to build efficient supply chains, from farmer to consumer. These solutions support the farmers in running their daily business and enable them among others to:

  • Sell their produce more efficiently, for a better price
  • Have a digital identity, including transaction history, showing credibility to financial institutions
  • Trade based on trust and knowledge
  • Store their money safe in their digital wallet.

The video below shows the basic functions of the AgUnity platform.

Enabling companies to comply with new EU directive

To realize a “Just and sustainable economy” the European Commission has recently adopted a proposal for a Directive on corporate sustainability due diligence. The proposal aims to foster sustainable and responsible corporate behaviour throughout global value chains.

Companies will be required to identify, prevent, end or mitigate adverse impacts of their activities on human rights, such as child labour and exploitation of workers, and on the environment, for example pollution and biodiversity loss. This will demand a lot more transparency across the supply chain, including access to the smallholder farmer. This “last mile access” can be realised through AgUnity’s low cost and user friendly digital platform.

The growth challenge

We are currently running and/or exploring projects in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Pacific. Over 6.000 farmers are connected and profiting from digital access to their supply chain.

Although the solution has been researched, developed, tested and implemented, we still need to expand it and improve based on feedback from the market. Once we have managed to connect millions of farmers and when they have been able to improve their lives, we will start becoming satisfied.

Might you have any suggestions or just want to help in this matter, I will be happy to discuss.

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