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2SCALE is publishing a repository of digital agri-food innovations and learnings for others to build on. We believe this publication is helpful for organizations implementing food security programs, or businesses working directly with low-income producers and consumers. The Digital Innovation Directory provides a non-exhaustive list of digital solutions across the value chain that you could consider when supporting or transforming agribusiness operations at scale. The solutions are organized in three sections based on their primary use cases, from (1) organizing supply from farmers, to (2) aggregating and processing by MSMEs, and (3) selling products to low-income consumers. Download the Digital Innovation Directory here.  

A second publication provides nine case studies of digital innovations that were piloted (and replicated) in 2SCALE. Download the Digital Innovation Case Studies here.

The opportunity of digital for agribusiness

Smallholder farmers are responsible for producing the food on which up to 70% of the world’s population relies upon. And while agribusinesses and farmer groups play an important role in organizing smallholder value chains, they often face challenges. From a smallholder perspective, these challenges include poor access to information, finance, and markets, which limit their productivity and income earning potential.

In 2019, at the inception of the second phase, the 2SCALE program identified digitalization as a key area of focus due to its capacity to fuel transformation and sustainable development in agri-food systems. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit the 2SCALE countries, the need for digital solutions such as remote farmer training and e-commerce became even more evident to us. For this reason, we expanded our scoping activities for innovative solutions that leverage emerging technologies such as satellite earth observation, artificial intelligence, chatbots, and blockchain. Working with digital solution providers has helped 2SCALE partnerships to effectively address the challenges and barriers that their low-income producers and consumers face.

Many of the digital solutions we found have been piloted in 2SCALE partnerships to demonstrate their contribution to cost savings, improved efficiency, transparency, and mass marketing, to name a few benefits. We also learned a fair amount about how to establish long-term relationships between the digital service providers and the agribusinesses using their services, which is important to ensure these collaborations are sustainable beyond a pilot.

We hope this first version of the Digital Innovation Directory (DiD) captures our ideas and learnings with regards to how agribusinesses can digitalize their operations to work efficiently with low-income farmers and consumers at scale. The Directory is accompanied by a few Case Studies which describe the use cases for various technologies in the Directory that were implemented with 2SCALE inclusive business champions. Would you like your company to be mentioned in the next version of the Directory, or do you have any questions? Contact Samuel Naimasia, the 2SCALE Digital Innovations Officer here.