Hello Tractor has developed low-cost, smart tractors that smallholder farmers can either buy or rent, along with a driver, via their mobile phones.
Hello Tractor has developed a low-cost tractor equipped with various attachments for irrigation, ploughing, fertilizer distribution and other tasks, allowing the tractors to be tailored to specific crops and stages of the production cycle. The company’s tractors are equipped with GPS, enabling Hello Tractor to track usage and gather data on location and market trends.
Additionally, Hello Tractor has developed an SMS booking and payment platform through which farmers can request, schedule and pre-pay for tractor services from nearby Hello Tractor owners. When users rent Hello Tractors, the tractor owner is paid $75 per hectare cultivated, which is approximately one-third of the cost of the equivalent manual cultivation, according to the company. Since launching in 2014, farmers participating in the trial phase saw their yields increase by 200%. So far, over 1,000 tractors have been deployed in Nigeria.
Why you should care
Approximately 500 million smallholder farmers produce around 80% of the world’s food. Many of them have limited access to tractors because of high costs, inadequate spare parts availability and a lack of repair services. The lack of mechanization on these smallholder farms results in low agricultural productivity. By providing affordable tractors and accessible leasing services, Hello Tractor makes it easier for smallholder farmers to access quality tractors, helping them to increase their productivity.