Millet, the superfood, is making a comeback in Kanthalloor, Kerala. This is all thanks to Lenovo’s technological prowess and our superhero volunteers. A technology ecosystem will be leveraged to revive indigenous millet cultivation and empower the local farmers in this region.
Lenovo employee-volunteers and student volunteers are driven by a deep desire to bring a positive change to an underserved community. They will work tirelessly for this without having to worry about their regular jobs. Lenovo’s smart technology will enable them to continue their regular jobs remotely, from the pristine hills of Kanthalloor, Kerala.
Surrounded by the misty Western Ghats mountains and evergreen forests, Kanthalloor is a fertile agricultural haven. Historically, over 18 varieties of millet were grown in this region, of which 2 survive today. Only a small tribal community continues to grow millet for self-consumption. Traditional millet cultivation has been discontinued due to issues caused by climate change, human-animal conflict, and the lack of formal market access.
Through Lenovo’s technology ecosystem, the small farming community here will gain access to new-age tech solutions that allow them to tap into the benefits of the millet value chain created under the project.
Overcoming the digital divide will be the catalyst for meaningful change for the community.
Work For Humankind: Lenovo’s Smarter Technology Supports the Millet Revival
Watch the full story here.
This campaign is built on a strong convergence model. Our on-ground partner Dream India Network, and our local community partners, Gram Panchayat of Kanthalloor and the IHRD College, will be working with us to create the ‘Lenovo Digital Centre for Kanthalloor Millets.’The Centre will be a hub where the volunteers gather data and analyze the impact of our work, educate farmers about best millet farming practices, and help in the monitoring of production and sales. Through this collaboration, we will ensure that the changes are long-lasting, and continue to benefit the community for generations to come.
Since the UN declared 2023 as the International Year of the Millet, the national and global millet value chains have built significant momentum. Despite the positive surge, small regional pockets such as Kanthalloor have limited access to the benefits.
Under the campaign, Lenovo will be delivering new-age tech solutions and livelihood generation opportunities to an underserved community – empowering them to reap benefits from the application of smarter technology. With the support of our volunteers, we will run an in-depth analysis of the local millet food system and create a sustainable model for the farmers in Kanthalloor. This model can then be showcased as a light-house project for replication across other farming communities within the country.
The village of Kanthalloor is a small, agrarian economy with over 1500 people practising agriculture to sustain their livelihoods. Surrounded by lush green forests, the fertile soil at Kanthalloor carries the inherent capacity to witness the cultivation of 10-12 quintal of millets per acre of land.
However, at present, the millet cultivation process is scattered, with a majority of the households producing millets primarily for self-consumption.
There exists enormous potential for streamlining the millet production process by collectivising farmers through the support of local bodies and directed technological interventions.
Here is a snapshot of the potential we can tap into.