Dimitra Letter to the Community
Hi everyone, Jon here, CEO of Dimitra.
I am reaching out to you, our community members, to provide an update on some of our current activities and to thank you for your loyalty and support since our launch on September 22, 2021, on Kucoin.
Over the past two years, the Dimitra team has been building an extensive digital toolset that allows us to evaluate and rate farm performance, crop management practices, and the potential of the land that the farmer is working on. Beyond analysis, we provide track and trace and regulatory compliance tools to the extended agriculture and food supply chains. This toolset combines artificial intelligence, machine learning, satellite and drone analytics, and IoT devices with critical data stored on the blockchain and captured via an Android mobile interface. All of this data is then analyzed, automatically through our revolutionary technologies, to provide farmers with simple, actionable insights to improve their processes.
This toolset was designed with various stakeholders in the extended ag/food value chain in mind, such as farmers, traders, food processing companies, investment companies, and lenders.
The first — and arguably the most — important component to a farmer is an evaluation of the farmland and its compatibility with growing specific crops successfully. To help the farmer with this we have created the Dimitra Scorecard. We are also now making this web3 scoring system available to banks, lenders and investment companies to aid them in evaluating their farming investment opportunities.
Dimitra Scorecard, provides a primary scorecard to farmers and agricultural financial companies, allowing all stakeholders to understand both the potential and the risks associated with the land. For example, a farm that does not receive sufficient rainfall must invest in irrigation to supplement water in the dry months.
In addition, the scorecard allows stakeholders to evaluate the level of investment needed to successfully grow their crop, while simultaneously collecting fundamental information to provide data-driven recommendations to farmers, helping them improve their farming operations throughout the year.
Land Suitability Scorecard
Our initial evaluation of each farm formulates a baseline score (excluding any improvements necessary to improve the land). This is done by analyzing details of the soil including pH, texture, organic carbon, and coarse fragments, in addition to slope, temperature ranges (min, average, max), precipitation, and artificial surface. We then calculate the impact of those variables on crop potential.
Farmer knowledge and potential
To ascertain education and experience levels, farmers complete comprehensive surveys. We also evaluate their previous loan performance.
Through our Dimitra Academy we produce educational materials to keep farmers abreast of the latest strategies to successfully grow, manage, and sell their crops. We have tests established to evaluate a farmer’s knowledge delivered in the crop-specific materials.
Farming and land performance
Using our Connected Farmer application, we evaluate a farmer’s soil preparation, planting, soil management, irrigation, cropping, harvest, pest management, disease management, storage, and documentation practices to ensure that farms are set up and ready for the best possible success. Where possible, we provide recommendations for farmers to better improve these processes to ensure farmers have the best start possible.
We use IoT sensors such as moisture and nutrient sensors, product quality meters, and drones to assess overall quality on a farm.
Farmers also have access to our crop marketplace to enhance their opportunity to obtain the best possible prices for their produce.
We evaluate environmental trends, weather patterns, market conditions and more to make ongoing recommendations to mitigate risk. A farm’s ability to manage these risk factors can reduce losses and improve quality, essentially for a thriving business.
The financial sector struggles to evaluate risks at a farm level and bases much of its loan decisions on previous financial success versus the potential of a farm to be successful. Often loans fail because a bank cannot access a strong agronomic analysis to support their decisions, or a farmer does not have sufficient data to make necessary decisions to manage risk.
The Farm Scorecard provides a valuable evaluation tool for financial institutions that are financing or investing in farming or agriculture.
Combining the Dimitra Farm Scorecard, Dimitra Connected Farmer, and Dimitra Marketplace with our export certification, deforestation certification, and carbon credit applications allows lenders to make better decisions when evaluating a farmer for a loan and maximizing the success of their lending portfolio. These tools also can be provided to the farmers taking out loans to maximize the success of the farmer.
Now that we have tested the Dimitra Scorecard, we are selling this toolkit to investors, lenders, and fintechs globally. We have recently signed up our first bank to use our tools with their lending customers. Preferred licensing agreements are provided to institutions paying fees in DMTR.
Application of Scorecards
Farmers in developing nations face many challenges in business, and many struggle to access capital for their farms. Financing the growth of their farm is a critical challenge.
Most are limited to simple staple crops, which provide very little margin. Shifting part of their farm to fruit-bearing trees (where possible) and other high-margin crops is a game changer from a financial perspective, creating generational wealth as trees produce for decades.
Establishing perennial crops and trees can take multiple years, and managing soil nutrients, pests, and diseases can be resource-intensive and costly. Avocado trees, for example, take 3–5 years before they start producing and 8–10 years before they hit peak productivity.
As a result, farmers need to access financing to carry the cost of the initial seedling, fertilizer, planting costs, and annual maintenance. In East Africa that financing is not readily available to small farmers. Dimitra is working towards enabling farmers’ income potential, prospectively leading to improved living standards for them and their families.
Dimitra is piloting the digitization of farming assets with NFTs. Our trial, which we have been running in Kenya, uniquely tracks each tree within the My Finance module in our Dimitra Connected Farmer App. Farmers enter data about soil and tree health and add photos to show progress. We supplement this data with drone and satellite data feeds to provide recommendations to farmers to maximize potential.
The digitization of these trees allows us to develop connected financing options for small farms.
We are now launching tools to finance trees, provide for maintenance costs, sensors, and the Dimitra Connected Farmer App to farming organizations globally. We will offer three NFT programs:
- Dimitra NFT Program (November 2023)
- Dimitra Crop Certificate Loan Program (to be discussed in a future letter)
- Dimitra Investment Fund Program (to be discussed in a future letter)
Dimitra NFT Program
Our first release in this series of programs, the Dimitra NFT program, will go live on November 20th, 2023.
Digitizing trees, farms, livestock, and other farming assets allows us to support philanthropic opportunities with digital monitoring that will allow us to measure the success of the initiative. Philanthropic organizations globally invest billions in programs to support agriculture and food generation and are seeking options to help measure success and sustainability.
Dimitra is launching a web3 platform that allows organizations to develop a farming project, collect funds from donors, and access the Dimitra Connected Farmer Application and Dimitra Marketplace for their recipients. Donors will receive automated annual reports regarding the program’s successes. Sponsorship is accessible to all, and an individual can sponsor one tree or many. Transaction fees are to be paid in $DMTR with fiat onramps so donors can provide support with a credit card. In the initial pilot, 50% of the tokens received for purchase of Dimitra NFT program will be burned.
In collaboration with one of our latest ecosystem partners in Kenya, One Million Avocados (OMA), we are currently planting 10,000 avocado trees across 100 initial farms. These farms have been evaluated digitally by Dimitra, using our Dimitra Land Suitability Oracle. We have also purchased soil sensors for OMA to provide additional data to the Connected Farmer Platform, enhancing this evaluation. The first 1,000 trees will be our pilot to test digitization and sponsorship interest preceding the development and testing of our fintech tools for digitization of loans and investments. We are working with several projects which are corporately or government sponsored to enable their selling of loan programs. For these initial projects we are working as a consortium with in-country financial institutions, government and regulatory agencies. .
The ultimate goal with One Million Avocados is to plant 1 million trees across East Africa.
We are initially offering the Dimitra NFT Program through the Dimitra portal.
We are selling Series One of the Dimitra NFTs in the following multiples:
NFTs will be released in tranches of 1,000 and 100% of the proceeds of this investment will be provided to the farmer in the following goods and services:
- Quality seedlings and the required fertilizer to plant them on their farm.
- Labor to assist the farmer with tree planting.
- Windbreak trees.
- Agronomic support from OMA to maximize the chance of success.
- Dimitra Connected Farmer application to track the tree lifecycle and provide reporting to their supporting NFT holders.
- Access to the Dimitra Marketplace and additional Sales and Marketing support to secure top rates for the future avocados produced.
- Track and Trace support to meet regulatory requirements for export, allowing farmers to export their avocados, presenting improved revenue.
- Annual IoT soil testing and analysis with tree care recommendations.
- IoT avocado quality testing to demonstrate product quality to buyers.
- Assistance with applying for carbon credits based on the storage of carbon by the avocado trees and cover crops.
- Annual education regarding agricultural best practices and automated recommendations from the Connected Farmer Platform.
The extended platform will be developed as a fully automated Web3 platform that provides many digital financial instruments supported by DMTR, enabled digitally by Dimitra’s platforms, and delivered by Ecosystem partners like OMA.
- Land for the planting of the seedlings.
- Ongoing care for the tree throughout its life, including ongoing fertilizer, pest and disease management based on recommendations from the Dimitra platform.
- Quarterly photos of the tree into the Dimitra platform for image analytics and transfer to the sponsor’s portal.
- Access to the tree so that OMA can monitor its progress and provide recommendations via the notification tool in the Dimitra system.
- Listing the crop availability on Dimitra Marketplace to enable Dimitra and OMA sales teams to achieve the top possible revenue for avocados.
- Logging traceability requirements in the Dimitra platform to qualify for export regulations.
- A percentage of trees die before they are productive.
- Many factors, such as climate, weather, pests, disease, accidental causes, lack of nutrients, lack of water, and other risks, may prevent a tree from producing or achieving its potential revenue.
- Donors will be able to monitor their tree(s) through the Dimitra portal, seeing the farm and photos of the trees.
Mature and productive trees produce up to 400 kgs of avocados annually. The global avocado market size was valued at USD 14.85 billion in 2022 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.3% from 2023 to 2030. Increasing focus on a healthy lifestyle and a growing number of buyers for healthy food products are impelling market growth. Moreover, increasing awareness about nutritional values, and rising import demand is expected to boost industry growth.
Dimitra believes this program contributes significantly to supporting many SDG goals. Changing the lives of farmers with limited access to capital and technology to plant high-yield, high-ROI trees, which they may not typically invest in due to the time and revenue.
The Dimitra NFT Program opens the door for people across the world to help support marginalized farmers through crypto. Many farmers may lack the basic finances to buy inputs to bring seedlings to maturity. This model removes the burdensome interest rates of traditional markets that put farmers in precarious financial positions. The Dimitra NFT program provides a more sustainable way for farmers to finance their operations and reach their seasonal goals.
*THIS IS NOT AN OFFER TO BUY OR SELL ANY SECURITY. ALL INVESTMENTS INVOLVE RISK AND MAY RESULT IN PARTIAL OR TOTAL LOSS. PAST PERFORMANCE IS NOT INDICATIVE OF FUTURE RESULTS. ANY HISTORICAL RETURNS, EXPECTED RETURNS, OR PROBABILITY PROJECTIONS MAY NOT REFLECT ACTUAL FUTURE PERFORMANCE. PROSPECTIVE INVESTORS SHOULD CAREFULLY CONSIDER THEIR INVESTMENT OBJECTIVES, RISKS, CHARGES, AND EXPENSES AND SHOULD CONSULT WITH A TAX, LEGAL, AND/OR FINANCIAL ADVISER BEFORE MAKING ANY INVESTMENT DECISION.