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IoT case study: Vodafone helps improve efficiencies in dairy industry

Indian company Prompt Softech was founded in 1995 to help tackle inefficiencies in the local dairy supply chain. The company initially launched operations with three main offerings: an electronic weighing scales, data logging software and a machine for measuring fat content in milk.

“Previously the point of collection had been open to malfunction,” says Prompt Softech Co-Founder and CTO Ritesh Sutaria. “The scales ensured an accurate reading and the fat-checker meant farmers could be paid for the quality not just quantity of their milk.”

The executive said the main challenge was how to get the data out of the local villages and into the collective: “If we could centralize the data it would allow the local dairy industry to analyze trends and better map dairy production. At an individual level, it could also show farmers how they compare to other farms elsewhere in India. With the cloud, finally, we have the answer.”

Prompt Softech is currently working with Vodafone Group’s internet of things technology to extract India’s dairy data out of the village and into the cloud. Using the Vodafone Managed IoT Connectivity Platform, the Indian company has created the Automatic Milk Collection System, a solution to weigh and analyze local milk production, then send the data to a centralized record.

“We knew the solution would hinge on working with telecom providers,” said Sutaria. “We selected Vodafone as the lead provider as it has the best coverage and they took the time to understand our business, and the specific challenge we faced.”

The Vodafone IoT managed connectivity service enables Prompt Softech to install a SIM in every device and activate it when the device goes live. The service also provides price certainty and can be managed from a single platform.

Prompt Softech is currently working on an IT plan with the aim of connecting 3.6 million dairy farmers in the Gujurat region to the cloud.

“I expect the Vodafone managed connectivity service to be a key component of this project,” Sutaria said. “We have 1,000 villages already connected and we’ll reach 18,000 within three years.”

The executive said the firm will not sell the data obtained from dairy producers, noting “The data will be available at state-level to be analyzed.”

The company also highlighted that better analytics will allow the Indian dairy industry to attract greater funding.

“The impact will also be felt at a local level,” said Suturia. “Farmers will know immediately the quality of their milk. There will be a record of every transaction, of every payment. They can see a history, with full transparency and they can finally feel connected to a wider industry.”

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