Agriculture IndustryFarming and Agriculture

Lenovo’s Work For Humankind initiative helps Kerala’s Kanthalloor revive lost millet varieties

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13 December 2023, New DelhiLenovo announced the successful culmination of its Work for Humankind Initiative, with six millet varieties making a comeback in Kanthalloor, Kerala. Branded Kanthalloor Millets, these six varieties will make their way to the kitchens and tables of local homestays and Anganwadi schools, as a result of Lenovo’s tech-based prototype model to revive millet cultivation, ease millet production processes and create market linkages.

An important milestone for the initiative was the setting up of the Lenovo Digital Center for Kanthalloor Millets at the IHRD College for Applied Sciences, Kanthalloor, to ensure that the community had access to technology tools to succeed in the Project. The Center has enabled digital access to the farming community and has emerged as the hub for important information relating to government schemes like state crop insurance, crop diversification schemes, subsidies, peer learning, and sharing insights on millet cultivation methods. Farmers in Kanthalloor today, use smartphones to access information and stay connected with the digital center, volunteers, as well as the community.

Lenovo also announced a partnership with Samudra Network and Agri App, to digitize the agricultural value chain specific to millet farming in Kanthalloor. This includes crop detail tracking, digitization of processing operations for quality control, and market catalog creation.

Pratima Harite, Head of Asia Pacific CSR & Philanthropy, Lenovo Foundation said, “At Lenovo, we believe our smarter technology solutions have the power to bridge the digital divide and create a more inclusive world with lasting impact. Our Work for Humankind initiative in Kanthalloor is a testament to this belief. With support from Dream India Network, we have empowered farmers to harness the magic of technology to revive millet cultivation and make them market-ready. Kanthalloor is a testament that access to technology can transform communities and even revive lost traditions.”

Kanth Mohandas, Kanthalloor Gram Panchayat President said, “Millet is part of Kanthalloor’s history, and we are glad to have revived our traditional farming practices with the help of modern technology. We would like to thank Lenovo and all their partners involved in this project for making Kanthalloor Millets a reality. This is yet another feather in the cap of Kanthalloor which recently won Gold for Best Tourism Village in Kerala from the Central government. The Gram Panchayat will support and nurture this initiative for the long term.”

As part of the initiative, Lenovo has also set up a millet processing center run by the women members of the Kudumbashree Self-Help Group in Kanthalloor. The processing center offers services to the farming community and purchases the millets from farmers ensuring timely payments for the produce. The facility will also be a seed bank and sales hub for Kanthalloor Millets.

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