Bhubaneswar: In a bid to provide the people of Odisha green, fresh and healthy vegetables through an Integrated Communication Technology based distribution retail chain, State Agriculture Department in association with VeggieKart Marketing Pvt. Ltd (an initiative by eKutir Rural Management Services Pvt Ltd and MGM Agri-ventures) have launched VeggieKart Distribution System and an online vegetable purchasing platform today.
Hon’ble Chief Minister of Odisha Shri Naveen Patnaik today flagged off the innovative VeggieKart and launched an online portal in a special ceremony at Jayadev Bhavan, in Bhubaneswar. While Shri Debi Prasad Mishra, Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Animal Resources Development graced the occasion as Guest of Honour, Shri Rajesh Verma, IAS, Principal Secretary, State Agriculture Department presided over the meeting. Shri K C Mishra, Founder Director of VeggieKart Marketing Pvt. Ltd introduced the VeggieKart to the public.
Among others present in the flag off ceremony were Dr. Prasanna Patsani, Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) Bhubaneswar, Shri Ashok Panda, MLA, Ekamra Bhubaneswar, Shri Bhagirathi Badjena, MLA, Bhubaneswar, North and Shri Bijay Mohanty, MLA, Bhubaneswar Central, Shri A P Mishra, COO of VeggieKart Marketing Pvt. Ltd and Shri Subrat Pusty were also. Dr. S K Chadha extended the vote of thanks at the end of the meeting.
VeggieKart Marketing Pvt. Ltd an initiative by eKutir Rural Management Services Pvt Ltd, along with promoters MGM Agriventures is taking a pioneer step in this sector by starting a vegetable marketing initiative under the brand names ’Veggie Kart’, ‘Veggie Wheel’, ‘Veggie Mart’ and ‘Veggie Lite’. The objective of this initiative is to develop a symbiotic relationship between the consumers and the farmers, wherein the consumers will get good quality vegetables and fruits and there is a rise in the overall income of the farmers. At the same time this shall completely eliminate the role of middlemen from the value chain. Further it also aims at organizing the otherwise disorganized sector of vegetable selling by bringing in the sellers under the brand banner of Veggie Kart which in turn shall help these sellers to increase their sales.
The Veggie Kart is the online vegetable purchasing platform wherein consumers can order vegetables online. The Veggie Wheel is the distribution retail chain which shall engage the urban poor and unemployed youth for the distribution of vegetables. The Veggie Mart is the brand value that shall be given to the unorganized sector and the Veggie Lite is the kiosks that shall be put up for selling vegetables for the poor people in both urban and rural areas.
As small and marginal farmers form the majority in the farmer base in Odisha. Owing to multiple factors these farmers lack basic infrastructural facilities and are in a state of absolute poverty. This problem of poverty can be tackled by tackling the inhibiting factors of crop productivity and farmer income. Odisha as a state is endowed with favourable natural environment to grow quality vegetables. The market for quality vegetables within Odisha itself is huge. The city of Bhubaneswar alone has a daily demand of 130 tonnes of vegetable. But due to lack of infrastructural facilities and the high perishable nature of the crop, wastage of the same happens to the tune of 35%, the brunt of which falls on the farmer who then stay away from cultivating vegetables. The need of the hour is to bring about innovations in this field in order to cut down on wastage and create a value chain infrastructure wherein the farmers and the consumers both are benefitted.
The uniqueness of the programme lies in the fact that the total supply and value chain is integrated with appropriate ICT infrastructure in order to ensure efficiency and effectiveness of the program. A local entrepreneur, identified by eKutir and MGM Agriventures, aggregates and procures vegetables directly from the farmers, thus ensuring the elimination of middlemen. Lastly this initiative ensures that the ultra-poor communities are able to afford fresh and healthy vegetables which otherwise they could not.
Uniqueness of Programme
Procurement from the Farmers aggregated by a local entrepreneur
Sorting, Grading at the Farmer level (By doing this Farmer knows the customer Choice)
Again Quality Grading and Packaging at a centralized distribution centre
Vegetable packaging and price labeling
Packaging at 1 kg/500gms/ 250gms/100gms
Affordable pricing as the cost of cultivation and transaction cost has been kept at low levels, with win- win situation for farmers as well as consumers.
National Value Information Dissemination System
First Dispersion Method
Fresh Vegetables everyday