Published on February 5, 2024
Since the COVID-19 pandemic, approximately 150 million people experienced hunger due to food insecurity. Digital agriculture technology determines accurate and specific risks in food production, providing farmers valuable insights to market conditions of a region specific to climate, environment, and economic situation. While many agricultural workers can benefit from these technologies, access is limited and currently only caters to smallholder farmers globally. In this study, Dahdaleh visiting faculty fellow Byomkesh Talukder, Dahdaleh director James Orbinski, and Rhonda Ferguson and their research team, looks at the effectiveness of eKutir, previously known as Blooom, a digital platform supported farmers and local and regional supply chains during the COVID-19 pandemic in Odisha, India.
They found that the farmers utilizing eKutir’s technology can better meet food security requirements while enhancing food security and systems before and during the pandemic. Their findings demonstrate that eKutir's platform enabled farmers to stay connected to essential markets, continue earning income, and bolster local food systems during the COVID pandemic. Although there are negative consequences associated with data-focused agricultural technologies, when technology design is guided by and tailored to the needs of resource-constrained farmers. It can significantly contribute to promote food security and fortify the resilience of their crops during crises in different contexts outside the pandemic, such as floods, droughts, pest infestations.
Ferguson, Rhonda, Mishra, S., Qureshi, S., Injac, L., Talukder, Byomkesh, & Orbinski, James (2024). Digital Technologies and food security during crisis: Covid-19 experiences from smallholder farmers in Odisha, India. Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems, 7. https://doi.org/10.3389/fsufs.2023.1150197.
|Global Health & Humanitarianism, Global Health Foresighting, Planetary Health
Digital Technologies and Local Food Security | Project, Research
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