Creating a sustainable information service for coffee farmers in Vietnam with GREENCoffee
GREENCoffee is a public-private partnership of ten partners from the Netherlands and Vietnam, all working to ensure a sustainable future for coffee farmers in Vietnam. As a result of climate change, coffee farmers in the central highlands of face increasingly turbulent weather conditions, from excessive rains to prolonged droughts, causing widespread production loss and water shortage.
The farmers require specific information regarding weather, market forecasts and farming techniques in order to increase production and sustainability. The GREENCoffee partnership aims to implement a financially sustainable information service to support 100,000 coffee farmers to increase their production, income and food security while reducing their inputs of water, fertiliser and pesticides.
Above: GREENCoffee partners at the annual partner workshop in Buon Ma Thuot, Vietnam, September 2017. Photo by Lissy van Noort.
The coffee smallholders from this region do not have sufficient information or resources to tackle the challenges exacerbated by climate change. In particular, the uneven distribution of water throughout the year means that coffee requires irrigation to achieve high yields. The area is extremely over-irrigated, resulting in declining coffee production and environmental damage.
In order to start providing farmers with a self-sustaining information service, baseline data is required to understand the specific needs of the farmers.
From left to right: Jouke Jongsma from TTC Mobile, Rajis Sinaga from ICCO and Le Hien, GREENCoffee project manager, at the annual partner workshop in Buon Ma Thuot, Vietnam, September 2017. Photo by Lissy van Noort.
Akvo trained partners in the use of Akvo Flow and the understanding of surveys, ensuring high quality data collection. Akvo Caddisfly is also used in this partnership, resulting in the ability of partners to test the quality of the soil, on the spot, using a smartphone. The data collected in the field is then integrated with supporting data from partners, including climate and market information. This information is sent back to the farmers via SMS.
Akvo provides the technology to collect farmer information, providing innovative solutions for soil testing and the ability to validate remote sensing models on the ground. We also support the lead agent, ICCO, in smartphone-based project monitoring and evaluation (M&E).
Information services for sustainable coffee farm management - Geodata for Agriculture and Water
Following the training session, the data of 393 farmers was collected over a period of two weeks in the field which acts as the baseline for the project. The data was analysed and baseline values for various indicators were set. Information service is now being developed so that the farmers can receive specific information on weather, rain and humidity forecasts, daily coffee prices and price forecasts, farming techniques, extreme weather conditions, pests and diseases.
Besides providing expertise in data collection, visualisation, and sharing, Akvo supports ICCO in monitoring and evaluation processes. This way, continuous improvements and adjustments can be made to ensure sustainability and learning.