Hewani Trace

Data tracking for food traceability and value chains.

Past and Current Partners

Mercy Corps, Acumen Fund, Senior Management Training and Design Thinking (SAP), Microsoft Tech for Social Impact GSMA Foundation.

Active Countries
East Africa region
Thematic area(s)
Climate, Inclusive Growth
SaaS, Whitelabel, Blockchain
Organisation Name
Virtual City Ltd

The Problem

Hewani Trace seeks to address the problem of Food Traceability through improved stock tracking, market linkages and access to finance for players in the Agricultural Value Chain thus enabling farmers to get better value for their produce with reduced losses. It aims to do this through focusing on improving the operations and efficiencies of Trade Associations, Food Processors, Government Agencies and NGOs that work in value chains that aggregate produce from smallholder farmers and package it for distribution in local or export markets. Whereas our paying customers remain businesses in the value chain, they believe their ultimate beneficiaries are the smallholder farmers that feed into these value chains. Through digitization of the various processes and entities in given value chains, they have been able to achieve positive gains in the tea, dairy and horticulture industries in Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda.

The Solution

The Hewani Trace is a digital solution for the agriculture industry offering users the ability to track the movement of orders, stocks, and payments through specified stages of the extended value chain and trace backward the history, time, application and location of each transaction or document.

How it works?

  • Step 1: Working with agriculture aggregators and processors to digitize their field clerk operations, the clerks download one of the 11 respective app options onto their Android phones.
  • Step 2: Hewani admins configure a management web portal for the business owners to track the field activities and set up the generation of reports and dashboards.
  • Step 3: Training the business customer to import all data in their value chain onto the platform.
  • Step 4: Field clerks log onto the mobile app, pick an activity such as Collect Stock, select farmer name, get a reading from the weight scale, and generate a receipt.
  • Step 5: The app captures the GPS coordinates and timestamp then sends the data to the management portal and an SMS to the farmer.
  • Step 6: The business owner or manager can view on the web portal all the transactions done by all the clerks in their value chain.
  • Step 7: The analytics dashboards provide auto reconciliation of purchases, inventories, activities, survey results, etc. against preset KPI indices and targets.
  • Step 8: The farmers receive alerts and notifications on any stock movement or trade done on delivered produce.
  • Step 9: The farmers receive payments for delivered produce based on commodity type, weight, grade, and market rate directly onto their mobile money account.
Digital X Solution Hewani Trace

Bridging the digital divide

The platform has 11 variants of the value chain mobile app, each configured to map the process of distinct levels in the value chain in easy-to-use 2 or 3 step user experience flows. The smallholder farmers interact with the platform simply by receiving SMS confirmations of transactions. In addition, they can send simple queries by SMS or USSD to market information. All the field mobile applications and interactions can work offline until connectivity is restored for synchronization.

Impact and highlights

Helped over 360,000 smallholder farmers increase their average daily weight deliveries by 13.5% in the Tea Value Chain. Reduced losses incurred between value chain players in the horticulture industry by 20%.Helped local aggregators and processors gain entry to the EU export market through the generation of accurate certification and regulatory documentation per batch.

Plans for expansion

Strong interest in expanding to Southern Africa, West Africa, South America, and South Asia.