The service, called Farm Man Yum or precision farming, was developed by the dtac accelerate startup, Ricult, which collects data from weather observation across the globe and assimilates into computer models. It stimulates the motions of atmosphere, using a complex system of mathematical equations.
“As the agricultural sector in Thailand is marred by low yield and productivity due to archaic and backward practices, it’s time to empower smallholder farmers in Thailand by accessing advanced technology like this,” said Alexandra Reich, chief executive officer at dtac.
Currently, one third of Thai population are in agricultural sector, which generated only 10% of GDP, which means the sector has been struggling with low productivity. dtac set up a corporate social responsibility-based program, called dtac Smart Farmer, aimed at bring radical improvement for agriculture and smallholder farmers.
With the vision of empowering societies, dtac defines digital technology as an essential tool to create innovation that puts people at the core. The firm has been fully leveraging our ICT capability to keep moving people forward and bring meaningful changes to their lives.
The collaboration is hoped to alter Thailand’s agriculture landscape by using each strength. dtac and Rak Ban Kerd will be responsible for marketing, while Ricult will focus on product development.
“Today has marked another step of technology development, giving the opportunities for smallholder farmers to access the advanced technology with the affordable price plan,” said Ms.Reich.
Boonchai Bencharongkul, chairman of Rak Ban Kerd Co, said Thai farmers have transformed themselves significantly, applying innovation and technology together with traditional knowledge. However, the worsening situation of climate change has posed a major threat on today’s agriculture, which is vigorously required a range of advanced technologies to cope with.
RBK has stood beside Thai farmers for decades, developing and empowering them to be more skillful. It aims to shift traditional farmers into smart farmers. RBK developed Thai farmers’ community through Rakbankerd.com.
“Farm Man Yum service is a newly-developed in-app feature, enabling farmers to manage their farm lands in a timely manner in the midst of sector’s growing challenges. We hope that the service will liberate Thai farmers from vicious circle,” said Mr.Boonchai.
Aukrit Unahalekhaka, CEO and co-founder at Ricult Co, said the startup aims to become integral to the agriculture of tomorrow. The solution to global problems like food shortage, malnourishment, poverty, rural unemployment need to start with smallholder farmers.
To give smallholder farmers the tools they need to be better informed and empowered economic actors - to work their way out of poverty.
“At Ricult, we built our entire business model around a simple insight: improving agricultural productivity and profitability is the only sustainable route to stronger rural communities. This is aligned with our vision of those who feed us, need us,” said Mr.Aukrit.
The 3 essential features include:
1. Personalized weather forecast
Farm Man Yum weather forecasts are generated on a spatial continuum, rather than on a regular grid. It means that users get the weather customized for their specific land, not just a district or province. In addition, the service displays the rain forecast 7-day upfront, and highlights the parts of each day in which rain is most likely to fall with hourly precision.
It can be called the most localized weather forecast service in Thailand.
2. Heath monitoring through satellite imagery
This feature help detect problems, early such as nutrient deficiencies and pest diseases, allowing users actively mitigate risk and manage field timely to protect yields.
3. Crop advice
The service helps farmer better plan farming by providing tips and knowledge through easy-to-understand infographics, advised by the professors from Kasetsart university. This feature will bring farming optimization. Currently, it covers 7 types of plants, of which rice, maize, cassava, cane, palm, rubber tree and durian.
For those who are interested in this product, you can access through Farmer Info app on both App Store and Google Play. You will get 60-day free trial. Subscription fee starts from 30 baht monthly.