Catalyzing the Data Sharing Ecosystem – Introducing FarmStack

For the past fifteen years Digital Green has been collaborating with government extension agencies to digitally transform their services for smallholder farmers. Through our extension video approach we’ve reached over 2.3 million farmers and over 46,000 government extension workers. Along the way our work has generated a lot of data, and we’ve always used that data to improve our work, help our farmers, and expand our business. A few years back, we started to ask ourselves some key questions — How do we get the data that’s helping us back into the hands of farmers and organizations so it can help them too? How many other organizations like ours are holding data with untapped potential? And finally, how can we catalyze a data sharing ecosystem to put the potential of that data to work for farmers? This thought led us to understand that the way forward was to develop a decentralized data sharing protocol to foster coordination across the ag ecosystem while protecting privacy, security, and control over how data is used. We call this protocol FarmStack. 

FarmStack is an open-source protocol which powers the secure transfer of data. 

Today we’re announcing the release of FarmStack, an open-source protocol which powers the secure transfer of data. FarmStack enables secure and controlled exchange of data which can inform tailored solutions for farmers, greatly reduce costs for organizations, and expand the reach of existing tools. When organizations want to unlock new services and solutions by sharing and combining data they need to be confident that personal identifiable data, proprietary information, or other sensitivities are not exposed or used inappropriately. When farmers give consent to use their data, they want to be confident that it will be used only for the purposes they have given permission for and not shared with other parties without their knowledge. FarmStack enables these solutions. 

Watch this video for a preview of our managed connector features

With significant investments from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, we’ve developed FarmStack as a free and open-source solution to enable peer to peer data sharing with customizable and enforceable data protections via a locally hosted and user friendly interface. Because FarmStack is a protocol, it can be connected with existing applications and platforms and easily integrated into an organization’s existing technology stack.

This release of FarmStack is the first milestone in a broader vision of catalyzing the data sharing ecosystem. Future releases will include managed connectors, data discovery and visualization tools, and will be accompanied by a growing community of FarmStack users who are taking our open source code and building their own custom solutions on top of it. We invite you to join the FarmStack community today and work with us to build a more open, confident, and productive data sharing ecosystem. For more information start here.