VNI Service Adoption Forecast

Service Providers Enable Rural Farming Communities in Africa

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By the Numbers

Over 50% of Uganda's population lives in poverty without reliable access to food. 1
The average Ugandan's life expectancy is 54 years. 1
Consumer mobile traffic in the Middle East and Africa will grow 19-fold from 2012 to 2017, a compound annual growth rate of 80%. 2
Uganda, with a current population of 35 million, 3 is expected to have the highest population growth 4 in the world in the next few decades. Eighty-six percent of the population is considered rural, 5 and 82 percent depends on agriculture as their main source of income. 1 Yet more than 50 percent of Ugandans live in poverty without reliable access to food. This is one of the reasons why the average life expectancy in Uganda is only 54 years. 1 There is a need for Ugandans to increase the value of their harvests through better farming practices and simple processing of any surplus they produce. Farming communities, where people can engage with partners and crop buyers to help them earn a sustainable living, are essential to this objective.
By providing mobile Internet capabilities, service providers are connecting rural farmers in Uganda to resources and information that help improve their productivity and livelihoods. In the Middle East and Africa, consumer mobile traffic will grow 19-fold from 2012 to 2017, a compound annual growth rate of 80 percent. 2 When service providers enable mobile Internet access, businesses such as the Grameen Foundation and the MTN group can create programs like the Community Knowledge Network (CKN). The CKN support structure allows organizations with advanced agricultural knowledge to connect with and assist rural farmers. CKN uses a database of agricultural information packaged into a simple and actionable format. This allows trusted community workers to easily transmit the information over mobile devices.
Through these connections, rural farmers now have access to valuable information, such as which crops to plant, when to plant, how to prevent and treat crop diseases, and where they can earn the most from selling their produce. Because service providers have enabled the Internet of Everything to connect people to each other, agricultural data, and mobile devices, rural farming in Uganda is more productive and effective, and rural farmers can make better decisions and enjoy a better quality of life.