Software major Cisco on Monday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Kerala State IT Mission (KSITM) to bring the benefits of digital technology and data science to farming communities in Kerala, as part of its Country Digitization Acceleration (CDA) programme.
The first phase of this initiative will be rolled out in 15 panchayats across Kannur, the home district of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
Cisco will build an Agri-Digital Infrastructure (ADI) Platform and set up Village Knowledge Centres (VKCs) for knowledge delivery and provide access to e-learning and advisory services to the farming and fishing communities in Kannur.
The comprehensive ADI Platform will provide access to a datastore with complete farming data of paddy and prawns farms in the region along with land and farmer profile databases.
This datastore will run Cisco's robust analytics and computer engines to extract insights on crop yields, weather patterns, plant disease patterns, soil quality, moisture content, forecasting and other data, and make it available to farmers and government officials through the VKCs.
This Cisco ADI Platform will be supplemented by a custom-built Smart Agricultural Platform that uses IoT sensors, Non-IoT databases, and satellite/UAV images to gather and relay real-time intelligence on soil content, moisture, weather conditions and other parameters.
This platform will become a centralised knowledge hub which will provide data-based recommendations and insights to improve agriculture planning, reduce the risk of crop mortality and overall operational costs.
Through VKCs, farmers can also access essential information on government policy updates, crop advisory services, market trends, rates and best practice videos. Farmers will also gain accessibility to government-provisioned financing on a Content Management System through a mobile application and web portal.
Cisco's Harish Krishnan said the impact of technology can be transformational for those who need it most, elevating standards of living and foster economic development.
M. Sivasankar, IT Principal Secretary, said the government's vision is to turn the state into a knowledge society with sustainable economic growth, technological advancements and better quality of life for all.