By 2050 our planet will be home to 9,9 billion people. To feed this larger population, food production must increase by 70%. Waterwatch Cooperative aims to improve yields through the more efficient use of resources such as water, fertilisers and pesticides. Thus providing farmers with a higher and more secure income and making the AgriFood value chain more sustainable. The mission of Waterwatch Cooperative is to make essential information services for AgriFood accessible and affordable to all actors in the value chain: farmers, producer cooperatives, processors, traders, financial institutions and insurance companies.
The organisation requested help from Nextview and the Run Live Truck crew. The SAP Run Live Truck is a ‘Hackathon on wheels’, an SAP mobile innovation lab that brings ideas focused on technologic solutions into prototypes within a week. The question: how can we – through the use of technology and data – help farmers in developing but also developed countries around the world protect their crops against crop diseases?
Of the 570 million farmers worldwide, 90% is a smallholder: a small farmer that has to earn its living on less than two hectares. These farmers, who live mainly in southern continents such as Africa do not have the capital to use pesticides every day. Often they are too late with the signalling of crop diseases, so a lot of crops are lost.
The Run Live Truck collaborated with Nextview for five days on a Smart Farming app that provides farmers with up to 14 days of insight into various data, with the aim of limiting the risk of crop diseases.
This unique collaboration between SAP, Waterwatch Solutions, InfoPlaza and Nextview resulted in the Crop Disease Alert App. A team of dedicated SAP developers brought the idea within one week towards a viable solution. The application has been commercially available from September 2017 globally, costing only one dollar per year per crop per farmer. An easy to use technological solution that offers farmers in third world countries the opportunity to protect their crops and increase sales in an accessible manner.
It combines satellite information from weather information (rain, humidity levels, extreme weather events), disease as well as other information and with a 3-step notification system (green, yellow, red) it sends notifications to the user with an accurate forecast of seven days in advance. The farmer can see when the risk of crop diseases rises and when it’s best to take action, giving them an early warning. This way, farmers can save up to 40% in pesticides, and increase their yields up to 25%.
Waterwatch is very satisfied with the way they are now able to express their mission to improve the world through the Crop Disease Alert App.
There is a third function in the app: farmers can give feedback to Waterwatch, with the aim to improve the app and to establish relationships with what happens in other fields. Eventually, they can provide farmers with even better advice.