October 05, 2018 | Patna, Bihar: TAFE’s vision of Cultivating India–Cultivating the World has paved the way for the expansion of its nationwide CSR initiative- ‘JFarm Services’ and the ‘JFarm Services App’. This unique initiative has been launchedin Biharjointly with the Department of Agriculture, Government of Bihar, under the Bihar Agriculture Growth and Reform Initiative (BAGRI), in the presence of Dr. Prem Kumar, the Honorable Minister of Agriculture, Bihar. JFarmServices facilitates the hiring of tractors and modern farm machinery to farmers free of cost.

Agriculture is the main source of livelihood in Bihar and driving growth in the agriculture sector is key to developing the state. 92% of the landholdings by area in Bihar are with small and marginal farmers who have limited or no access to agriculture mechanization. JFarm Services proposes to launch its services in 11 districts in Bihar (Begusarai, Bhojpur, Buxar, Darbhanga, Gaya, Nalanda, Patna, Rohtas, Samstipur, Muzaffarpur and Vaishali) and expand across Bihar within the next year. Farmers who own small parcels
of land across Bihar can now hire state-of-the-art farm equipment to increase their productivity and income significantly.

The JFarm Services App will empower farmers with affordable farm mechanization services in a transparent manner. Farmers looking to rent their existing tractors and farm equipment of any brand are linked directly to farmers seeking to hire them through the free of cost “Farmer-to-Farmer model” (F2F) of JFarm Services app which enables them to contact farmers, negotiate rental prices and fulfill their respective requirements directly. With this pioneering platform, TAFE brings the benefits of the technology-enabled sharing economy to boost the income of the farmers.

Ms. Mallika Srinivasan, Chairman & CEO – TAFE, said: “India is a land of small farms. A majority of our farmers, almost 85% of them, have no access to farm mechanization which has the potential to improve their yields and income. JFarm Services is a CSR initiative that allows bothfarmers offering their tractors and farm equipment on rent, and smaller farmers seeking this service benefit directly from the JFarm Services app. It is our aim to touch the lives of millions of farmers across the country as we progress
towards the Prime Minister’s vision of doubling farm income by 2022.”

Farmers can hire tractors and equipment via the JFarm Services Android App or by contacting the toll-free helpline 1800-4-200-100. The App can be used on low-cost Android phones and is designed to run on very little data. Farmers who don’t own smart or feature phones can use the toll-free helpline. The platform also provides periodic updates on local weather, market, agri-news and mandiprices without any fee.

Mr. T R Kesavan, President & COO, Product Strategy & Corporate Relations – TAFE, said: “TAFE through JFarm Services has collaborated with the Government of Bihar as a part of the BAGRI initiative to support the GoB in making farm mechanization available to small and marginal farmers through the shared economy model to create sustainable agricultural productivity and growth for the state.”

JFarm Services initial pilot roll-out covered large states like Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. JFarm Services has directly benefitted around 60,000 users resulting in over 100,000 orders, adding up to over 250,000 hours in hired farm machinery usage.

TAFE established JFarm India in Chennai, Tamil Nadu in 1964 with an objective of empowering farmers with advanced farm technologies to increase farm productivity and meet India’s growing food demands. Over the years, JFarm has worked through several challenging situations from limited water availability to inputs costs to the shortage of labour and has developed a viable and sustainable model that contributes to improved farm productivity, profitability and livelihood opportunities.

JFarm Services is an initiative by TAFE to increase easy access to farm mechanization solutions through rental of tractors and farm equipment for small and large farms, localized weather forecast, latest mandi prices, agri-news alerts and advisory.