A US-based Pakistani startup has won the top UN award. Ricult, the MIT-based startup was presented the “Innovative Ideas and Technology on Agribusiness” award by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in a ceremony held in Milan, Italy.
The ceremony was part of the ‘Seeds & Chips – The Global Food Innovation Summit’, a conference attended by a number of renowned figures including the former US President Barack Obama.
Speaking on the occasion after receiving the award, Usman Javaid, Founder & CEO Ricult said: “At the moment, there is a lot of dialogue taking place around food safety and security. However, few people realize the importance of empowering farmers and their role in the grander scheme of things.”
The key to solving their problems, he said, “was to equip them with the right inputs, technology, and knowledge”.
Over 300 startups from 80 countries spread over five continents had applied for the prestigious award. The goal of the award is to support the best solutions in the agriculture technology and food tech sectors with the aim of improving the socio-economic conditions including the food safety and security conditions in developing countries.
What is Ricult
Ricult is an MIT-based startup founded by a team of MIT graduates led by Usman Javaid who is the Founder & CEO. It is an online marketplace. Where one can buy crops, fertilizers, and other micro-nutrients
The Ricult business model was designed specifically considering all the bottlenecks in the agricultural value chain. By leveraging data analytics and propriety creditworthiness assessments, Ricult drastically increases farmers’ income through a mobile platform that provides them with affordable credit, high-quality farm inputs, and access to end buyers. The pilot project was launched in Kasur in June 2016; Ricult aims to launch a complete end-to-end solution by July 2017. Ricult’s motto is ‘Those Who Feed Us, Need Us’.