An oped by Khairul Islam and Nilusha Kapugama on how mobiles can help match supply and demand for cold storage space for Bangladesh potato harvest has been published in Daily Star.
The most widely accessible form of ICT in Bangladesh is mobile phone. An information management system can ensure that information on the availability of space can be sent out to traders and farmers. The cold storage owners are a part of the Bangladesh Cold Storage Owners Association. The association can collect the information about the availability of space from members. The information can be sent to registered traders and farmers either on a subscription (push basis) or made available for retrieval when needed (pull basis).
Of course, ICTs cannot solve all problems.
While cold storage is important in making agriculture supply chains and markets more efficient, it is also important to follow proper procedures in storing the produce in the facilities. This includes ensuring that the produce is sorted properly and damaged or diseased produce is not stored with the healthy produce. The inclusion of a few damaged or diseased potatoes will often lead to contamination of the healthy produce stored in the same space. This kind of knowledge can also be provided along with space availability to registered farmers and traders. On the part of the storage suppliers, it is necessary to maintain the facilities to the required standards.