A system has been put in place to support the collection, collation, storage, retrieval and dissemination of agricultural information at KenCall by a group of agriculture experts trained to collect and disseminate information along the farming value chains.
The service primarily targets individual farmers but it is also accessible to agriculture extension agents so as to complement existing efforts to support and engage the SHFs with detailed and varied agricultural information on how to improve agricultural planning, production, post harvest processing and value addition, negotiation and marketing.
To access the service, farmers call the help line numbers and ask their questions on farm related subjects like livestock, crops or climate. The in-house agricultural experts provide the right solutions or call them back with feedback within 24hours. In the event that the agricultural expert is unable to respond in real-time, the helpline experts gets in touch with the second-line agriculture subject matter specialists who are able to provide the answer to them. With the right answer the in-house experts revert to the farmer and answer the question.
This has impacted the SHFs positively by providing high quality, reliable, timely and affordable information about the best agricultural practices via mobile phone. The operations run from 6am – 11pm on a daily basis.
KenCall expects that with the right information, farmers will be in a position to improve their yields through better farming practices or an increase in the price that can be obtained for their produce through better understanding of product demand.
The service creates a two way communication channel between farmers and agricultural experts and enables farmers to obtain real-time answers in English or Swahili and local language depending on their preference.