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South-South Innovation Platform: First Agri-tech Cohort Announced


South-South Innovation Platform: Relevance

  • GS 3: e-technology in the aid of farmers.


South-South Innovation Platform: Context

  • Recently, Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog and the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) rolled out their first AgriTech Challenge cohort for its ambitious innovative Agri-tech program.


South-South Innovation Platform: Key points

  • The Agritech Challenge is an inaugural initiative of the South-South Platform created to facilitate the exchange of knowledge and solutions between the smallholder farmers in Asia and Africa.
  • The cohort aims to help smallholder farmers across Asia and Africa to address their challenges in the aftermath of the pandemic.
  • The Cohort represents a diverse range of solutions across the value chain of the smallholder farmer, including soil analysis, farm management & intelligence, dairy ecosystem, carbon credits, solar-based cold storage, among others.
  • The Agritech Challenge focuses on improving the financial health of smallholder farmers and will work towards helping the participants build and test their solution in the new market.
  • The Challenge is also engaging with AIM (Atal Innovation Mission)-incubated early-stage innovators under a dedicated AIM-track, to help build readiness for international expansion.
  • An additional 15 promising AIM-incubated innovators have been selected across irrigation technology, fintech, online marketplace, smart farming, cold storage, among others.
  • They will receive support to explore expansion through masterclasses by global experts and opportunity to engage with industry mentors.


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AgriTech Challenge Cohort and Agri-Fintech innovators: Two tracks

  • Applications were invited to facilitate agriculture expansion to the international markets through two tracks- Main track and AIM track.
  • A total of 10 high-growth innovators have been selected in the Main track, out of a total 100 applications.
  • The key objective of the main track applications was ‘Expansion – Support solution pilot in the chosen international market.


First Agri-tech Cohort : Why important?

  • In India, more than 50% of the population is dependent on agriculture and it contributes to about 15-18% of the GDP.
  • As agriculture is a sector that emotionally appeals the masses, Indian agencies are prompted to undertake policy measures to stimulate industry landscape.


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About South-South innovation platform

  • In July 2021, AIM, NITI Aayog in partnership with UNCDF, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Rabo Foundation launched a South-South innovation platform to enable cross-border exchange of innovations, insights and investments.
  • Through this platform, cross-border collaborations among emerging markets across India, Indonesia, Malawi, Malaysia, Kenya, Uganda, Zambia would be enabled.


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