AKILIMO – A digital service to provide agronomic advice to cassava growers
Enable farmers to make informed decisions about land preparation, how and when to plant, harvesting times, fertilizer application and intercropping in cassava production to improve farmers’ profit.
AKILIMO (“smart agriculture”) provides recommendations that are customized for site-specific conditions and the objectives of the user, so farmers can turn a higher profit from their investments in cassava production, access to markets and inputs provided. AKLIMO also integrates good agricultural practices into its recommendations, for example for the quantities and timing of fertilizers, thus reducing losses. AKILIMO’s site-specific recommendations help to avoid overapplications, and contribute to improved livelihoods for smallholder farmers.
Description of the approach
AKILIMO is built on decision trees and algorithms derived from field trials, crop and geospatial modeling. From a cloud-based prediction engine, recommendations are fed into four different interfaces that farmers can either interact with directly or with the help of an extension agent. AKILIMO is available as a printable guide (including annexes of maps and tables), a smartphone app, an interactive voice response (IVR) system and a chatbot. Currently, recommendations are available for southern Nigeria and Tanzania.
Examples of use
AKILIMO was developed jointly with primary partners who had a specific interest in developing these decision support tools. In Nigeria and Tanzania, 44 new partners have started integrating AKILIMO into their operations. 217,000 farmers can access AKILIMO thru Viamo’s 321 service, Arifu’s chatbot as a short message service, via Telegram or WhatsApp. In Tanzania, it is also available thru the digital agricultural service of Esoko.
AKILIMO is also expanding to other regions and crops. In Rwanda, decision support for fertilizer application is being developed for cassava and is under validation for potato.
Links to relevant online resources
Thompson Ogunsami email@example.com
Logos of Centers and partners