Rajendra Lora is a farmer’s son who has seen the struggles and challenges faced by a farming family. He is driven by the mission of helping farmers increase their income and help them manage their businesses better. As Rajendra puts it “I am not helping them earn more. What I am giving them extra is their own money, which is lost due to inefficiencies of the country”.
Agriculture is the primary source of 70% of Indian households. And more than 80% of these farming families are small or marginal, facing the maximum challenges and are most vulnerable.
To remedy this and address the pain points in a regular Indian farmer’s life, Rajendra Lora, along with his wife Chandrakanta Sahu, founded FreshoKartz in 2016. Coming from an agricultural background themselves, Rajendra and Chandrakanta have been able to build a strong value proposition that is practical to execute in the Indian rural landscape.
Focused approach: Freshokartz is currently focused on helping farmers buy Agri inputs more efficiently.
An average small & mid-sized farmer buys Agri inputs worth Rs.1 lacs a year, and equipment worth Rs.1 lac over a three year period. These purchases are riddled with issues — the retailers are far away from the farmers’ village, thus requiring the farmer to make the long journey on a working day to buy these inputs like seeds, fertilizers, etc. These frequent trips cost the farmer a lot of money.
Moreover, the quality of the seeds is unpredictable and availability too is erratic. Additionally, there is a 10% — 30% price fluctuation due to a lack of transparency.
In this scenario, Freshokartz offers farmers a strong value proposition and makes their agri-input purchases very efficient.
To help farmers make better-informed decisions, Freshokarz also provides farmers advice on what to grow, when to grow, how much fertilizer to use, etc. It also makes it easier for farmers to obtain financial assistance or insurance through its partners.
Freshokartz uses agronomists and contact centers to assist farmers with soil-based crop and fertilizer recommendations.
Freshokartz has built a comprehensive tech platform and app via which they deliver these services to farmers. However, knowing that most farmers may not be familiar with using a tech platform, Freshokartz has created a unique model of Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLEs). These VLEs, called Saarthis, are Freshokatrz’ representatives who help farmers buy the inputs they need and provide them with the advice.
Freshokartz currently serves 10,000 farmers across 100 villages via 100 VLEs. They are currently focused on Rajasthan and will continue to do so this year.
As the community of farmers connected with Freshokartz grows, it plans to help farmers also sell their products better by connecting them to buyers that can offer better rates, and support them with logistics and warehousing support to make the selling process more efficient.
In 3 years’ time, Freshokartz aims to serve a million farmers via 100,000 VLEs.
Supply Chain Labs is excited to support Freshokartz in their journey where they have dedicated themselves to reengineering and reinventing Indian agriculture to support Indian farmers and boost their productivity with products, agri-specialists, and education platforms.
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