PETALING JAYA: AirAsia has initiated Ourfarm, an e-commerce platform, to help farmers fly high with a greater revenue-generating capability.
The Ourfarm business-to-business platform was poised to revolutionise the agribusiness supply chain, connecting farmers directly to businesses, thus eliminating middlemen cost and boosting farmers' earning power.
It also comes with logistical support to help farmers fulfil orders directly to businesses.
Agriculture and Food Industries Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee, AirAsia Group executive chairman Datuk Kamarudin Meranun and AirAsia Group chief executive officer Tan Sri Tony Fernandes launched the Ourfarm e-platform at Serdang Agriculture Department on Monday (June 15).
Ourfarm was established as a strategic partnership with the ministry, supporting over 1,000 government contract farmers as well as owners of private farms.
Kamarudin said the platform was a disruptor that would help many small businesses by reducing the cost of fresh produce procurement by up to 25% as they could source directly from the agriculture producers.
"Importantly, Ourfarm will help increase the profit margins of agriculture producers by eliminating middlemen cost.
"This platform provides a more efficient supply chain management system which supports the food security agenda of the nation," Kamarudin said at the launching ceremony.
AirAsia Group is also planning to expand the platform to support farmers in the Asean region, which is dubbed as the most productive agriculture basket in the world.
"We have learnt from the experience of running our inflight meal catering, and our recently launched Santan Cafe, where we also faced challenges of high prices for fresh produce," he said, adding that the platform would help address such challenges.
Kiandee lauded AirAsia Group for introducing a disruptor brand and the e-platform that could contribute towards availability, accessibility, affordability and stability of the agro-food and agribusiness sector in Malaysia.
"This strategic partnership between the ministry and Ourfarm will create a new ecosystem that can help agribusinesses expand with greater outreach, offering better value for money for end-consumers.
“The ministry has been proactive in engaging industry players, especially in helping to match businesses to e-commerce platforms on both the business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) fronts," he said in his opening speech.
It is in-line with the agenda outlined in the National E-commerce Roadmap to future-proof existing businesses and to expand local market access.
Ourfarm leverages on AirAsia's robust all-encompassing ecosystem including cargo, logistics and payment capabilities, and significant database of businesses and consumers.
Ourfarm co-founders Radzi Tajuddin and Nadhir Ashafiq said farmers, breeders, and fishermen shared only a small pie in the food supply eco-system.
Therefore such disruption was timely, to help farmers and fishermen earn more.
They noted a survey by the Malaysian Anti-Competition Commission (MyCC) showing that farm producers only earned between RM1.50 and RM2 from every RM10 of product sold.
Ourfarm boasts a network of 7,000 lorries and pickup trucks that could be mobilised within 60 minutes to perform pickup and delivery.
"This ensures the freshness of the product while at the same time providing cost savings to our farmers," said Radzi.
Nadhir expressed confidence that Ourfarm would help improve livelihood and boost income of the local producers, at par with their counterparts in Japan and China.
The platform, at zero onboarding cost, offered farmers the opportunity to learn business digitalisation at the RedBeat Academy.
Ourfarm's last-mile solution would be powered by Teleport, the logistics arm of AirAsia Group as well as TheLorry.com.
Ourfarm would also provide other benefits, including credit terms.
Currently, Ourfarm operates only in the Klang Valley area, with plans in the pipeline to expand it to producers and businesses nationwide before expanding it to the Asean region.
For more information, surf www.ourfarm.asia website.
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