Mastercard launches digital platform for Andhra farmers

Vijayawada : The Andhra Pradesh government and Mastercard on Wednesday introduced e-Rythu, a mobile platform that provides farmers an easy and secure way to buy, sell and receive payments for agricultural products via their feature phones.

The platform digitizes agriculture marketplaces, payments and workflows. It will help small-scale farmers looking to sell their produce to connect with the right buyers more efficiently in local language and receive the best possible prices.

The platform has been developed by Mastercard Labs for financial inclusion in Nairobi and customized for India use by the Labs team based at Pune, according to a statement by Mastercared.

Due to the small scale and long travel distance from the places where they sell, most small and medium farmers in Andhra Pradesh suffer income losses. Additionally, since these farmers do not have a formal credit history, it is difficult for them to access any formal financial services.

Ae-Rythu will bring a positive change to the lives of over one million small and medium farmers in Andhra Pradesh by allowing them direct access to markets on the platform, discover the best price of their crops and receive digital payments for what they sell.

The platform also creates a digital transaction history, which allows farmers to receive formal credit from banks and other financial institutions.

"Our partnership with Mastercard to introduce e-Rythu will make horticulture markets more transparent for sellers, buyers and other stakeholders and pave the way for financial inclusion of millions of small and medium farmers," said Chiranjiv Choudhary, Commissioner of Horticulture, Andhra Pradesh.