Monday, 23 May 2011

AMITSA: web- and mobile-based market information system on agro-inputs

AMITSA is a multi-country, web- and mobile-based market information system on agro-inputs for eastern and southern Africa implemented in collaboration with IFDC, Esoko, COMESA and EAC.

The lack of accurate, up-to-date information on agro-inputs is one of the major constraints to agricultural productivity and to the development of business linkages and trade in the region. To address this problem, AMITSA was created to provide accessible data through an open and collaborative market information system. The AMITSA network covers eight countries – Burundi, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

Statistics, directories, publications and market news are compiled and shared via an interactive, web-based portal ( Monthly price reports are sent by e-mail to over 600 recipients and can be downloaded from the site’s publication center. Mobile phone applications were recently integrated into the AMITSA system, which broadened availability to nearly every farmer and agro-dealer in the region by allowing data to be transmitted via text messages. Price information, technical, extension or marketing messages and alerts will be distributed to more than 5,000 agro-dealers and to hundreds of thousands of farmers. AMITSA’s mobile networks are managed by Esoko, a web-based tool that gives people and businesses the opportunity to share information quickly and affordably.