Thai startup, Ricult, says they’re increasing crop yields with developing an app for farmers

Important points

  • Thai startup Ricult is using artificial intelligence and machine learning to help small farmers in Thailand and Pakistan improve yields.
  • According to Ricult, about 400,000 farmers in Thailand are enrolled in this app.
  • It analyzes weather patterns and advises farmers when to start sowing and when to fertilize.

 

 

As an eastern country, these new steps towards technology can help Technology Transfer and Exchange Network (D8tten) to reach new results at this field. The Thai startup scene is spawning a new generation of tech entrepreneurs like Aukrit Unahalekhaka who came up with the idea of ​​using artificial intelligence and machine learning to develop apps that help small farmers increase their crop yields.

 Unahalekhaka and Usman Javaid, who met at MIT after returning from the United States, co-founded Ricult in 2016. The startup aims to improve the lives of Thai and Pakistani farmers.

His partner is in charge of business in Pakistan, Unaharekaka takes care of Thailand and focuses on the central states of Lopburi, Saraburi and Korat, especially with corn and cassava farmers.

 

 

farmers in Thailand

 

 400,000 lucky farmers

According to Unahalekhaka, Ricult's mobile app has registered nearly 400,000 farmers in Thailand till now.

For the past two years, we have worked a lot with central banks and many research institutes, showing that our technology has increased farmers' income by at least 50%,” Unahalekhaka said on CNBC. Told to Managing Asia.

The Ricult app allows farmers to access  data and make better decisions throughout the farming cycle. The platform analyzes weather patterns and advises farmers  when to start sowing and when to fertilize.

However, getting Thai farmers to embrace new technologies has not been easy.  Thailand made a huge effort to make its farmer familiar with technologies.

“Introducing new technologies to completely change their farming methods was an initial challenge,” said Unahalekhaka. But after spending time shadowing the farmers, “I figured out how to convince them and  make the app easier to use and persuade”  This app is a serious problem facing farmers to deal with reduced yield.

These risks make it difficult for farmers to obtain reliable capital. Unaharekaka said some people would rent sharks.

 “Thanks to our data platform, banks credit profiling gives us a better understanding of a farmer's risk profile. ” The app helped banks “provide affordable credit to  farmers at  fair interest rates,” he said.

Broker model

Ricult does not charge farmers for the app. Instead, the bank charges fees when applying for a loan.

 Unahalekhaka said he would carefully protect this type of personal information in light of the Thai Personal Protection Act, which the government plans to enforce by June next year. (Although legal provisions have been stipulated, the pandemic has prompted Thai companies to give the government  time to prepare internal processes.)

Unahalekhaka said he would seek the consent of farmers before sharing such information with banks, insurance companies and crop buyers.

 Ricardo is growing rapidly and Unaharekaka has plans to expand to Vietnam and the Philippines, he said. With the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation as one of his backers, he is accelerating funding.

Unahalekhaka said the company hopes to make a profit by next year. “I want to open a series round to investors next year,” he said, believing in Ricart's vision.

 How is Unahalekhaka incorporating new technology? Here are three basic ideas for a community like  farmers to successfully embrace technology.

  • Emphasize the benefits. Technology can do a lot to make our lives easier, but the process of learning new technology can still be difficult.
  • Find your tech champion
  • Provide continuous training.

Briefly mentioning

Aukrit at Ricult is performing a miracle.

Aukrit Unahalekhaka is a  founder and CEO ( in Thailand) who uses machine learning that helps the farmers of Thai and Pakistan to increase farm performance and impress the poverty.

 I won a number of prestigious awards from  the whole world, He said.

Due to his work at Ricult, he was nominated as an Obama leader by the Obama Foundation and Tatler Asia: Generations Tomorrow will shape the future of Asia. Ricult holds a Master's degree in Engineering and Management from MIT and was a Fellow of the MIT Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship.

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Thai startup, Ricult, says they’re increasing crop yields with developing an app for farmers

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Thai startup, Ricult, says they’re increasing crop yields with developing an app for farmers

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