Online platform helps farmers join forces

Global Farmers platform connects farmers from all over of the world

A community of farmers who support and strengthen each other – that’s what the new Global Farmers platform is all about. Farmers and growers from all over the world can use the platform to connect with each other and consult Rabobank experts.

"This is the most educational trip of my life," a Brazilian farmer enthused last year during a working visit to the Netherlands at Rabobank’s invitation. The experience taught him that he and his Dutch counterparts had a lot to learn from each other. The new Global Farmers platform enables farmers to acquire and share knowledge in a similar manner.

It’s an online space for and by farmers, where they can find information about issues such as business succession, global trade, innovation and ways to maximise returns and become more sustainable, as well as learn more about each other’s day-to-day operations. The platform places the dialogue between farmers front and centre.

Figures and trends

The Global Farmers initiative is very much in line with the bank’s ‘Banking for food’ strategy, which emphasises the importance of access to financing, knowhow and networks. "This platform gives us the opportunity to share figures and trends relating to food supply chains directly with our agricultural customers," says Berry Marttin, member of the Rabobank Executive Board. "An added advantage is that it brings together farmers from all corners of the world. With Global Farmers, we are launching an online community that is perfect for sharing expertise and contacts. This platform is an obvious go-to for customers who are focused on the future – it has enormous potential."

The platform includes a tool called FarmVisit, which farmers can use to plan a visit to each other in order to learn from one another. Berry Marttin: "I hope that farmers who have signed up will use the opportunity to send their children to live with a Global Farmers family on the other side of the world for a while, so they can discover what life is like over there."

Crucial role

Agricultural entrepreneurs who join the Global Farmers network can exchange information, organise working visits and contact experts in the specialised Food & Agribusiness Research and Advisory (FAR) department.

The platform also provides access to geological data that can help farmers to use their land efficiently. Berry Marttin: "We are all aware that farmers play a crucial role in feeding our rapidly growing global population. We are always asking our customers how we can help them increase their output. In fact, that’s how we first got the idea for the Global Farmers initiative. Our customers can use the platform to share their knowhow and combine their networks in order to grow their businesses."

Worldwide network

Global Farmers will gradually be expanded to include additional features created through co-creation. Rabobank will be working with farmers to develop new functionalities that add value to their day-to-day operations. Berry Marttin: "We are keen for users to tell us in what other ways we can help them. Our goal is for the platform to eventually become a worldwide network of successful farmers."

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