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Using ICTs to Get Access to Information on Agriculture Market-Pou Sokvisal.pdf

Using ICTs to Get Access to Information on Agriculture Market-Pou Sokvisal.pdf

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Published by Pou Sokvisal
This text is about how ICT both modern and traditional ICT help to rural people to get access to agriculture market
This text is about how ICT both modern and traditional ICT help to rural people to get access to agriculture market

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Published by: Pou Sokvisal on Oct 29, 2013
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By: Pou Sokvisal
 Cambodia is an agricultural country and agriculture has remain the mainstay of Cambodia economy.Agriculture sector in Cambodia is lacking the use of information technology hence farmers are strugglinghard to overcome their financial problems. Cambodia is one of the world's poorest economies, and, thus,economic development is its highest priority. Much of its population is involved in subsistencefarming (families producing what is needed for daily living). About 66 percent of the country is forested or woodlands, with only 13 percent of the land arable.Agriculture is about doing farming, growing some of seasonal crop; raise animals, and doing some off-farmwork. All the activities are likely to do in the rural areas, so agriculture and rural development is correlated.However, this sector is essential for Cambodia fighting against poverty but Cambodia is still facing with the problem in the rural area such as irrigation system, land tenure, rural infrastructure, and agriculturetechnologies as well as using of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in promotingagricultural sector. The farmers are facing many problems in rural areas where they could not proper knowledge and information regarding agricultural related problem. The lack of unawareness and lack of resources farmers have no idea about sell their product in the market. If the government desire to improve theagricultural sector, improve farmers capacity, lifestyle, and produce more agriculture productivity thegovernment of Cambodia should improve and develop the rural side first, especially on ICTs development.
Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) refer to technologies that facilitate the creation, processingand transfer of information across space and time. ICTs enable performing tasks quickly, efficiently andcomprehensively, facilitating the flow of large volumes of information to a wide audience across numerousgeographical locations. This included Internet, wireless networks, cell phones, landline computers, fax, andother communication mediums. Traditional ICTs, such as conventional radio, landline telephones,newspapers, TV and libraries. As ICTs are definition a means of communication and information sourcingand manipulation, it is important to included traditional information sources institutions, such as libraries and post offices, in areas where the general level of access to ICT is still growing.
Marketing is defined as the process of identifying, communication with and maintaining relationships with
 buyers of a producer’s products to directly affect volume, value and timing of sales. Marketing
activitiesenable a producer to find new buyers, build and maintain relationships with current buyers, and accessmarket research to manage supply, anticipate demands and establish prices. For some commercial farmers,traders, wholesalers and exporters often have well-developed marketing function operating in these areas.Smallholders, however, are still very limited in their marketing capacities. Often they are individualhouseholds who depend upon just one buyer, and have little access to price or other demand-relatedinformation and little power to negotiate.
Use mobile phone as a marketing tool is a very good idea to help farmers to get access to more information.Farmers use mobile phone to build a network of contacts and draw on this wider experience and expertise toobtain critical information more rapidly. Essentially the mobile phone, its special applications, and theinternet are becoming management tools for farmers, specifically in relation to marketing. Greater access toinformation seems to help farmers make better decisions around transportation and logistics, prices andlocation, supply and demand, diversification of their product base, and access to inputs.Basic voice calls have already empowered smallholders by expanding their immediate communicationnetworks to be in contact with a wider circle of potential buyers. Using mobile phones facilitates transactionsand provides producers access to relevant timely producers access to relevant timely information, allowingthem to sell at a higher price improve their income.Mobile phones or smart phones are being use in Cambodia for all classes of family. For farmers users it wasuse to deliver market information. Pricing is the most widely shared information with other information provided including weather, crop advisory, fertilizer availability, and updates on government schemes. Usingmobile phone to deliver this type of information can benefit smallholder farmers by raising their bargaining power and increasing their incomes by enabling them to better manage their inventories and negotiate for fairer prices, reduce price dispersion and by reducing year-to-year price variations.In recent years, short message and text services have taken up and effectively deliver prices and tradinginformation via mobile phone to farmers but the message was deliver in English it would be great if some of mobile companies have Khmer message services to the local people, especially people living in the ruralareas.
The global and Cambodia is increase in technology and connectivity have resulted in a rapid expansion of applications, tools, and software. This has created new opportunity for innovation in informationdissemination in poor rural areas. The use of mobile phones, tablet, the internet, and other modern hardwareis common in many developed and developing countries today, but one of the oldest technologies is radio.Radio program have long provide useful informing population in remote locations.Radio is also known as a traditional ICT for the people, it is one of a popular ICT that all kinds of people getaccess to it, especially for the rural people. Majority of people living in the rural areas are owned a radio.Farmers, sellers, and producers would be easy to get access to information on the product prices which
facilitate it easy to farmers to negotiate price with traders. Farmers’ need accurate information on agriculture
 price as well as technique including input use, and they also need to source good-quality inputs in a timelyway for production.We should have the educational radio program cover on flooding control, farm and household management,food safety, nutrition, agriculture and farm safety. It should also deals with such topics as application of fertilizers, pesticides and insecticides, rainwater harvesting, treadle pumps, and small scale irrigationmanagement. Illiterate small farmers learn about methods for accessing seeds, reaching the market, andaccessing finance and microcredit facilitate. A question and answer service replied to question sent in byfarmers and allows them to share experience with one another.Radio program is also help smallholders decide what, when, and how to produce crops, and who they should produce them for. The have access to daily commodity prices to help them decide which market to go to andwhen, and, thanks to information on the export process.
Mass media could play an important role in disseminate information about education, health, and agriculturedevelopment. Media inform the farmers about weather forecast as well as use of pesticide and indicate aboutflood situation and environmental change in their areas. Television is one of the powerful channel of themass media, which transmit information very fast about agricultural technology among the farmerscommunity. It can be said that most important communication tools presented today is mass media throughuse of this technology and agriculture related information can be transferred easily to the farmers.Both radio and television have one of the most important media for diffuse the technical, systematic andscientific information to the people. In country where literacy level is very low especially in rural areas thechoice of mass media is very important. In this context the television and radio are play very major role intransfer modern agricultural technology to educated and uneducated farmers within a short time for farmerscommunities. The mass media has an increased in the knowledge and information similarly has providedgoo
d output in recent years. The main reason of the popularity of television among masses is that it’s simply
 people propose to choose the easiest way for get information and learning the simplest way can be found intelevision educational programs about health, education as well as agriculture development.Mass media offer powerful channels for communicating agricultural messages and related information whichcan enhance the capacity building of farmers. Broadcast media have the ability to disseminate information tolarge audiences efficiently and television can be a particularly most famous channel among farmers.
Upon the farmers are able to use that kinds of ICTs they will have more access to information. Greater access to information seems to help farmers make better decision around:
Transportation and logistics:
Farmers begin to leverage economics of scales. They canorganize and coordinate among themselves and larger-scale truckers to consolidate volume.Greater coordination also occurs around the timing of aggregation, collection, and volumes.Larger volumes can lower costs and enable farmers to realize higher prices. Personal travel istraditionally the most common method of obtaining market information. For example, rather than having to walk a kilometer to a local market to meet a trader, farmers can make a voice callto establish whether price and quantities demanded for a product that day are worth the traveleffort.
Price and location:
An ability to compare prices increase farmers’ power to negotiate withtraders. It also enhances farmers’ ability to chan
ge the time and place of marketing to capture a better price.
Supply and demand:
Farmers gain greater control over their production and product sales byfinding new sources of demand, improve their ability to adjust supply and quality to marketconditions, and learn about quality, grades, and product presentation.
Diversification of their product base:
Over the long term, a better understanding of marketdemand and consumer trends helps farmers diversify into higher-value crops and capture greater value.
Access to inputs:
Farmers can make more informed decisions about which inputs are better or cheaper to buy and when and where to best obtain them.

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