After Green Revolution now it is time for Digital Revolution in Agriculture to revitalize the backbone of Indian economy. Increasing penetration of mobile phones and internet usage in rural India paves the way to e-nable the farming community by making them information rich which enhances decision making capacity. This helps in building a digital bridge between farmers and real customers and facilitates best selling experience for farmers and best buying experience for the buyers, traders, processors, exporters, importers and consumers. The “e- Spice Bazaar: e-Commerce platform for better market reach and price realization of Chilli farmers of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana” is the Spices Board India (Ministry of Commerce, Government of India) initiative supported by the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (Government of India) to cater the needs of farming and consumers/traders societies.
Need for e-Spice Bazaar
The increasing concerns on food ingredients and food stuffs across the world have cast its shadow in the trade and commerce of spices also. Many of the importing countries, especially the developed markets who are major importers of spices and spice products have fixed limits for various factors governing the quality of the products. Maximum levels for aflatoxins, ochratoxins, pesticide residues, standards for food hygiene etc. have been fixed and the spices exporting countries are forced to strengthen the supply chain originating from the farms. Education and training of farmers right from the farm level have become a necessity and over a period of time, the identity of the consignment from the farms will have to be kept to enable traceability of the products even after many months of its shipment.
To enable traceability and create credibility of the farm produce, backward linkages from exporters to the farm level have become necessary. The Spices Board initiative is to develop and implement a traceability project at the national level for all the major spices that have a global demand and are exported from India.
Use of GS1 Standards to Enable Traceability
Traceability is the ability to track forward and trace backward the history and movement of a product through its supply chain. As spices transform from raw materials to finished goods and move from source to retailers’ shelves, trading partners must gain visibility into each of the steps along the way. They must get answers to “what, where, when and why” questions to meet consumer and regulatory demands for accurate and detailed product information.
GS1 standards create a common foundation by uniquely identifying, accurately capturing and automatically sharing vital information about products, locations, assets and more. GS1 standards not only allow for the tracking and tracing of items moving through a supply chain, but they also enable the flow of information about those items in internal systems and between trading partners.
The GS1 System is founded on a common set of globally recognised identification numbers called the GS1 Identification Keys, along with the ability to encode Attribute Data (e.g. Serial numbers, Best Before dates, Batch or Lot Numbers).
GS1 standards are often referred to as the “common language of business” that provides the framework required to support the traceability business process. The GS1 Global Traceability Standard is technology independent and defines the essential information that must be collected, recorded and shared to ensure “one step up, one step down” traceability. The standard is applicable to companies of all sizes and geography.
Best practices of implementing the GS1 Global Traceability Standard require the adoption of barcoding on cases/ cartons, consumer items and logistics units (e.g., pallets).
E-spice bazaar uses the following GS1 identifiers to enable traceability:
Global Location Numbers (GLN)
Each farm is assigned with a unique 13-digit GLN. The GLN makes possible the unique and unambiguous identification of physical locations and parties used in the supply chain in order to provide globally unique location identification for traceability processes.
Serial Shipping Container Code (SSCC)
SSCC is a unique 18-digit identification code used to identify a logistic unit. The SSCC encoded into a Barcode ensures the accurate identification of the logistic unit as it moves between trading partners through the supply chain.
Phases of the Project
First Phase -1,000 Chilli farmers of Edalapadu Mandal in Guntur district.
Second Phase -10,000 Chilli farmers in Guntur District and 1000 Turmeric farmers of selected Mandals in Guntur district.
Third Phase -10,000 Chilli farmers each from Warangal and Khammam districts of Telengana and 10,000 chilli farmers of Prakasom and 5000 turmeric farmers in Guntur district and 5,000 turmeric farmers in Khammam district.
- Connecting farmers and traders via technology platform
- Crop and price analytics for better decision making
- E- Commerce platform
- Timely advisory from experts
- Weather information
- Navigation support for farmers to find nearby input suppliers, quality control labs and cold storages
- Good Agricultural Practices
- Pre & Post harvest management
- Crop disaster management support
- ICT based learning materials
- Mobile application support
- Farm activity monitoring system
Advantages With this System
- Ability to link with other global registries like the United Nation’s Blue Number platform by leveraging a farm’s Global Location Number (GLN)
- Assure timely and customized scientific advisory services
- Voice based alerts on crop and weather information
- Gets up-to-date market information
- Direct contact with traders and exporters
- On demand technical support from experts
- Possibilities for group insurance and bank loan facilities
- Support in grading and quality control
- Virtualization of stock for selling
- Product at competitive price through direct purchase
- Availability of quality product
- Assured supply of product
- Assistance in planning the future purchases
- Better acceptance of the quality product by the importers
- Unique and universal identification of each farm to facilitate traceability up to the farm level