Partnership will leverage Web3 technology to extract and apply real time data to credit scores; first beneficiaries to be Brazil’s agricultural communities.
Credit Data Alliance (CreDA), the credit rating specialist, and Ager Solution, the data capture and analysis specialist for the agricultural sector, recently announced a partnership in Brazil to access and incorporate real-time data into an affordable credit programme for Brazil’s farmers.
The scheme is part of CreDA’s Credit4Good programme to apply decentralised finance (DeFi) models to deliver affordable credit to people and communities without credit histories or accurate (traditional) financial data.
As part of the partnership, Ager Solution will extract, analyse and incorporate multiple and alternative data sources including local land registries, financial and business histories, crop pricing, soil quality and, even, climate contingencies to ‘fuel’ CreDA credit rating models with more realistic — and accurate — figures than traditionally available.
Fakhul Miah, Chief Executive, CreDA, describes such data as the real ‘essence’ of risk assessment, but which remains inaccessible to the majority of local farmers.
“The root cause of the prohibitive rates currently being applied to the agricultural sector in Brazil has less to do with finance than data. This is what we call the ‘Credit Paradox’. Thousands of perfectly viable farms are obliged to pay two or even three times the base rate, simply due to the absence of accurate reliable data to support their credit application,” says Fakhul.
According to data from Brazil’s Instituto de Economia Agrícola (IEA), the cost of credit from the Government’s own programmes for the agricultural sector is set to rise by as much as 67.7% compared to last year.
“In practice, however, the country’s farmers are likely to face interest rates of up to three times this level.” Adds Fakhul.
Ager Solution will use multiple remote sensing technologies to track and extract data points using drones (for soil quality and meteorological conditions, for instance), as well as financial and ownership information (land registries) to which Artificial Intelligence is applied to assess each farmer’s situation and add a predictive assessment.
CreDA’s Web3-based digital identification technology (DID) will create distinct and immutable identities both for the land and the farmer which will be validated and connected through land registry data on the Sicar database (Cadastro Ambiental Rural), Brazil’s rural land registry.
Vitor Hugo, CEO and Co-founder, Ager Solution, explains that the impact of a completely decentralised, Web3 approach cannot be overstated.
“First, the use of Blockchain ensures the integrity, privacy and accessibility of the data to the farmers themselves; they will be able to log and track the status of their land — everything from soil conditions to ownership — as well as the resulting credit rating, which is derived from the same. The farmers themselves will control all the data — it belongs to them — and they’ll have clear visibility on how their farming practices (including the use of this data) is affecting the cost of their credit. This is a radical departure from traditional credit ratings which are invariably based on limited or incomplete data, and over which, in reality, farmers have little influence. Now, they will have direct access to their data, not only to consult but to track whether and how their credit ratings evolve over time — a practice which is simply impossible with traditional, centralised systems,” he says.
“Secondly, integral to the data we are tracking as well as the subsequent credit model, is the issue of sustainability. The range of data capture devices we’re employing — from ground sensors to drones — enables us to track the farming practices actually being employed on a particular field and their resulting environmental impact. Once again, this data is immutable — its integrity is ensured via the Blockchain — and has the potential to create tremendous value for the farmer,” adds Hugo.
Through the partnership, Ager Solution will also be monitoring the degree to which sustainable farming practices are being implemented on the ground, adherence to which will be reflected in farmers’ eventual credit scores and a reduction in the cost of credit.
Ager will be employing a unique ‘dual’ DID model; farmers will generate personal ‘soul-bound’ tokens based on their ownership of assets as well as other financial and personal data, all of which is managed and controlled by them, representing one element of the eventual credit calculation. A complementary element is based on the land itself, whose ownership history as well as the quality of the soil, and the farming practices to which have been applied over successive years will be documented in a conventional, tradable NFT token.
“This approach creates massive value, not only for farmers in terms of accessing affordable credit, but also for the wider community and farming ecosystem. Land which has been ecologically managed and maintained will create a higher market value than that which has not; and all supporting data will be logged and validated through the NFT. The result: a virtuous circle where all participants are incentivised and rewarded for their husbandry of the land,” adds Hugo.
Sao Paulo-based researcher and academic André Linsardi confirms the potential of the partnership to address the principal barrier to effective use of AI to improve yields whilst reducing environmental impact.
“Any AI system is only as effective as the quality of data analysed. Traditionally, everything from ownership deeds, to the genuine state of remote, inaccessible estates have been very difficult to objectively verify. The combination of Ager’s real-time data capture backed by the incorporation of records such as those available on the Sicar register will ensure quality, verifiable data across the board. Hosting and delivering the resulting data via Web3 will also ensure a level of transparency and access that simply can’t be offered through conventional, centralized models,” he says.
The partnership is part of CreDA’s Credit4Good programme designed to use decentralised finance (DeFi) models to help provide access to credit for people without credit histories or accurate financial data. It follows the announcement of Impact Market, the financial empowerment protocol, as strategic partner to administer the credit and implement a ‘learn to earn’ programme to train and incentivise local farmers to participate in the scheme.
About Ager Solution
Ager Solution is committed delivering technology for the benefit of farmers and agricultural communities. Through the use of data, we help farmers make optimal use of seed, fertilizers, Select agrochemicals, water and energy to maximise their production while minimising their environmental impact.
Through a combination of data collection, IoT, analytics, AI and Blockchain technology, we provide farming communities with practical guidance and best practices towards a genuinely sustainable business model.
We believe that this type of ‘precision’ farming can deliver benefits not only to the farmer, but to the wider community, particularly in Brazil’s more rural areas.
Ager Solution currently partners with over 10 farms across Brazil, helping to deliver — on average — productivity gains of 50% and a reduction in raw material inputs of 30%.
CreDA (Credit Data Alliance) is the first trusted credit rating system for the world of Decentralized Finance and the link between on-chain and traditional financial systems.
We’re building the trust architecture that underpins Web3, helping minimize risk for existing and emerging platforms and enabling access to capital by reducing the need for crippling amounts of collateral while opening up DeFI to billions of people without access to traditional banking.
Credit4Good is a programme led by CreDA and partners that uses the principles of DeFi such as transparency and immutability to provide access to credit for people without credit histories or accurate financial data. It’s part of the company’s mission to fulfill the original promise of DeFi, shape the world’s most powerful and equitable credit ecosystem and give ‘credit where credit is due’ to nearly 4 billion people who have been victims of the Credit Paradox.
The programme has set out to address three key areas affected by the Credit Paradox: Food Security, the Climate Emergency and Global Inclusion.