April 15, 2021
India introduces e-platform connecting aquaculture farmers with buyers
An electronic marketplace for aquaculture farmers and buyers, e-SANTA, was inaugurated by Union Minister for Commerce and Industry Piyush Goel at a virtual programme earlier this week.
The platform will help aqua farmers get better prices and exporters to directly purchase quality products from the former enhancing traceability, a key factor in international trade.
The term e-SANTA means Electronic Solution for Augmenting NaCSA Farmers' Trade in Aquaculture. The National Centre for Sustainable Aquaculture (NaCSA) is an extension arm of the Kochi-based Marine Products Export Development Authority, under the Ministry of Commerce.
The new platform is expected to reduce risks for farmers, create awareness about products and markets, increase farmer income, and shield them from wrong practices.
e-SANTA is a paperless, end-to-end electronic trade platform between farmers and exporters. Farmers have the freedom to list their produce and quote their price while exporters have the freedom to list their requirements and choose the products based on their requirements such as desired size, location, harvest dates.
The platform will provide detailed specification of each product listing and is backed by an electronic payment system with NaCSA as an escrow agent.
After crop listing and online negotiation, a deal is struck, advance payment is made and an estimated invoice is generated. Once the harvest date is fixed, the buyer goes to the farm gate and the produce is harvested in his presence. After the harvest, the final count, quantity of material is verified, the final amount is decided, and delivery challan is issued.
Once the material reaches the processing plant, the final invoice is generated and the exporter makes the rest of the payment. This payment is reflected in the escrow account. NaCSA verifies it and accordingly releases the payment to farmers.