/ ashley@markitopportunity.com

Up, Up and Away

Two hours outside of the city of Nyeri, Kenya (population 125,000) our team will find hundreds, if not thousands, of smallholder onion farmers, preparing their lands for the season ahead. In only two short weeks, the long rains will fall upon these farmers, with the hopes of maturing month-old red onions into beautiful, ready-to-sell bulbs.

Today marks the beginning of the first pilot program of our mobile platform. Over the next five months, our team will sign up 200 farmers and traders to our platform, half of which will reside close to Nyeri. With tedious registration verification techniques and the implementation of our newest Trust Score, we will ensure that each farmer on our platform is well-known to us and carrying out the best farming practices -- from planting to harvesting.

What we have learned through our months of human-centered research is that farmers are willing and ready to do the work it takes to attract traders in distant markets. Traders demand high-quality products and are willing to pay top price for them.

Joining these users digitally is not an uncommon attempt to solve the inefficiencies in the agricultural supply chains in East Africa, however, we are heading into our pilot humbled and prepared for constructive feedback from our potential users. The evolution of our platform is critical to maintaining our human-centered design approach, and in fact, we could not imagine a better outcome than a complete revamp of our offerings.