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Agricultural Internet Tools

2020-06-24 来源: 51Due教员组 类别: 留学资讯

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下面为大家整理一篇优秀的essay代写范文 -- Agricultural Internet Tools,文章讲述作为印度私营部门的领导者,ITC在印度农业领域取得了举世瞩目的成就,年收入达1.5亿美元。毫无疑问,该公司的目标是进一步开发这个潜力巨大的市场,该市场已经养活了10亿人口,并且除了印度以外,仍具有满足全球粮食需求的过剩能力。为了实现此目标,ITC开发了互联网平台e-Choupal,作为连接农村农民和印度农业市场的新纽带。该电子商铺充当信息交换和电子商务枢纽的收集工具,并要求ITC在当地农民的房屋中放置具有Internet连接的计算机,每台计算机的服务半径为5公里,可以覆盖大约600个农民。 Sanchalak(寄主农民)通过运营e-Choupal,可以获取当地mandis的每日农作物收盘价,获取有关新耕作技术的信息以及收集ITC的农民订单。 ITC还可以按照前一天的收盘价购买农民的农作物,并与农民建立紧密的供应关系。通过为农民提供更多的利润空间和更高的效率,e-Choupal成功地绕过了当地的贸易部门(AnnamalaiRao2003)。

Agricultural Internet Tools

As a private sector leader in India, ITC has progressed significant accomplishments in the Indian agricultural industry, with $150 million revenue annually. No doubt that the firm has the aim to further exploit this high potential market, which has fed 1 billion people and still has the excess capacity to satisfy the worldwide food demand besides India. To assist this goal, ITC has developed e-Choupal, an Internet platform as a new bond for connecting the rural farmers and the Indian agriculture market. This e-Choupal acts as a gathering tool for information exchange and an e-commerce hub, and requires ITC to put computers with Internet connection in local farmers’ houses, with each computer a 5-kilometer service radius that covers roughly 600 farmers. Operating e-Choupal, a sanchalak (host farmer) can access daily crop closing prices on local mandis, acquire information of new farming techniques, and gather farmers’ orders for ITC. ITC can also buy farmers’ crop at the price of previous day’s closing price and construct a close supply relationship with farmers. By providing more profit margins and higher efficiency to farmers, e-Choupal has bypassed the local trading mandis successfully (Annamalai & Rao, 2003).

A. Benefits E-Choupal Has Brought to Farmers and ITC

As an innovative farming Internet tool, e-Choupal has brought Indian farmers and ITC huge benefits.

For the farmers, the benefits have spread over costs, trade efficiency, informative opportunities, transparency and fairness, control and empowerment, respects and dignity as well as sustainable  development and additional credits.

First of all, selling directly to e-Choupal enables farmers to have higher prices (6$ per ton) for their crops and buying inputs and other goods from e-Choupal requires them lower prices (Annamalai & Rao, 2003). Second, under the professional supply chain support, crops are weighed more accurately, deals are processed faster, and farmers can get the payment immediately, which has not only saved costs but also stimulated trade efficiency for farmers. Third, the system provides an access to a larger range of information eg. crop prices, and thus farmers can make rational sell decisions. By providing transparent prices and engaging local farmers, it becomes fairer for farmers to trade. At the same time, information of new farming techniques can help improve the productivity, so as the overall revenue.  Hence e-Choupal has increased crop prices and yields, while decreased costs, to accomplish profit and efficiency maximization for farmers.

Besides, farmers that place orders through e-Choupal can obtain high respects from ITC, treated as not merely consumers but partners. During the transparent pricing process, farmers also conduct empowerment and self-actualization. For the sustainable development, the system has broken the isolation from the outside world to the Indian villages, and therefore their generations can be exposed to more modern commercial and educational opportunities. Additional credits are also provided as farmers could enjoy more bank services through e-Choupal that are unavailable or particularly expensive before.

For ITC, e-Choupal’s benefits emerge from cost reduction further to the agriculture supply security and product innovation, which lead to ITC better plan its future operations and eventually higher profit growth.

First, huge cost reduction can be achieved, as there are lower intermediation fees and logistic fees. ITC buy from farmers directly with lower prices than from intermediary traders. Meanwhile when farmers come to sell their crops, they would also buy products from ITC, hence e-Chaupal acts as a distribution channel for ITC with lower transportation costs, thanks to aggregated orders. Overall, e-Choupal has decreased near 2.5% of the procurement costs (Annamalai & Rao, 2003).

Second, e-Choupal helps ITC establish long-term supply relationship with local farmers straightway, which allows ITC to control the security and quality of crops directly, and thus to reduce risks and build its good reputation. The system also provides ITC an easy access to bottom-up information such as ground conditions and expected yields, which helps to adjust its future strategy. What’s more, farmers’ demand at new products or service would encourage ITC to improve its production innovation. 

B. Things ITC Must Do to Improve Information Infrastructure to Create E-Choupal Kiosks in Villages

There are several physical and social restraints for ITC to create e-Choupal kiosks in villages, and ITC needs to realize the following specific requirements to surmount the obstacles.

Power plantation

The first measure is to plant enough quantity and standard quality of electricity power to supply the computers, as the power availability is unstable. To solve this, ITC have to use solar battery chargers to supply and meanwhile build UPS units and introduce spike suppressors and filters that stable the voltage.

Transportation

Indian villages lack convenient public roads and vehicle accesses, thus initially ITC have to place the e-Choupal within the radius of 10 to 15 km of a city. Beyond this, it has to send technicians to visit the rural kiosks for maintenance and technical support.  

Telecommunication

Third, the telecom infrastructure is also poor that has limited the Internet transmission speed, and hence to activate the system, ITC has to troubleshoot the telecommunication limits. For example, they need to plant a C-DoT to synchronize the data exchange in order to achieve faster transmission speed (Annamalai & Rao, 2003).

Consumer Targets

Also, as most villagers have never used computers, it’s necessary for ITC to have meetings with farmers and collect feedbacks about the information that the users really want to gather from the system, and modify the interface of the computer application.   

System Equipment

More basically, the technical equipments shall be installed with supported hardware and software. The hardware includes PC with processor and printer, while the software requires the adequate operating system, Hindi word processor and other applications that might be useful in dealing with quality tests or information gathering.  

C. Sanchalaks’ Role in E-Choupal System & Reasons for ITC to Put E-Choupal in Sanchalaks’ Houses

Sanchalaks play an essential strategic role in the e-Choupal system, in both geographical and cultural management. They have virtualized the communication between farmers and ITC, acting as communicators, sales and even entrepreneurs, which help ITC to maximize the commercial value of e-Choupal, encourage product innovation, and maintain close relationship with farmers, and simultaneously, bring fast and low-cost information, low-travel-need but trustful products, and high satisfaction to consumers.  

First, due to the geographical reason, sanchalaks are the necessary communicators for continuous information flow between the e-Choupal and ITC. Without stable and non-stop information flow, the system would not be able to provide ITC accurate supply information, innovative product design or effective distribution channels. Local sanchalaks are usually qualified with abundant local market knowledge and information, and hence sanchalaks sustain the commercial value of the system for ITC in the fierce competition.

Second, due to the cultural effect in rural India, trust is the most valuable asset between transactions, and the sanchalaks can fulfill the sales function with their high status and reputation in the village. Besides, since most of the farmers are illiterate, sanchalaks as human interfaces are more familiar and approachable to villagers. Moreover, ITC believes that sanchalaks with the entrepreneurship and abundant local information might leverage the profit-making power better in the initial stage of the system.  

 

As for why ITC has put the system in sanchalaks’ houses, primarily it’s more cost effective than building and maintaining a new physical kiosk. Since there is still the need to employ local farmers to be the sanchalaks, such operation saves both time and logistic costs for either the company or the sanchalaks. On the other hand, ITC tries to create more social benefits for the villages, and building e-Choupal in local farmers’ houses could help the villagers to access more modern resources and learn about outside knowledge and opportunities, which has satisfied not only the economic benefits but also the social responsibility of ITC.

 

Word account: 1283

 

Reference

Annamalai, K., & Rao, S. (2003). What Works: ITC’s E-Choupal and Profitable Rural Transformation Web-based Information and Procurement Tools for Indian Farmers. University of Michigan.

 

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