Just yesterday, I shared with you guys that MasterCard is digitizing Eastern African agriculture with #2Kuze, you can read about it here, today OLX has announced its plans for agriculture and have even started testing soils in a bid to help local farmers choose appropriate fertilizers.
OLX is a very popular online classified ads site, well known for connecting buyers and sellers shopping mainly for clothing and electronics. In a bid to diversify, the firm introduced an agricultural section in its platform. This section would allow farmers to sell livestock and fresh produce on the online platform.
In line with assisting farmers to get maximum yields from their farm produce, OLX has started mobile soil testing in agricultural rich zones. The results will assist the firm to offer the right mix of fertilizer bought through its platform.
The mobile soil testing lab comprises of a truck furnished with equipment for analysing soil samples. OLX will be able to determine the nutrient levels, deficiencies, acidity and general health of the soil.
Through the tests, OLX will be able to gauge which fertilizers are more suitable to be used for a specific location. This information will prove very valuable to farmers even as we near the planting season. Previously, farmers have been using fertilizers without considering the specific needs of the soil. This results to increased soil acidity which leads to decline in crop production.
OLX has partnered with Dutch headquartered Soil Cares Ltd to conduct the mobile soil tests. The tests will take a record three hours to complete. The firm has also partnered with Mavuno Fertilisers and Osho Chemicals. The deal with Mavuno Fertilisers will see farmers buy the input at 15 percent discount while on the other hand, Osho Chemicals will offer pesticides.
OLX seems to be invested in its agricultural section. It was only in November 2016 that the firm launched Kilimo Smart OLX centres. These are input centres that are purposed to help farmers’ access seeds and fertilizers which they purchase through the firm’s website. To start with, the company set up two farm input centres in Nakuru and Nyandarua with a view of opening more.