Information and communication is the need of today’s world. It is communication that leads human civilization from Stone Age to today’s modern era of science. Advancement in information and commutation technology has made this world a common village. We can now communicate and share information in any corner of the world with ease. It is hard to imagine world without ICT. ICT has been effectively involved in various endeavors. So Agriculture too can’t be at odds from it. Information and Communication occupies pertinent position since human started farming. System, types and methods of farming has been exchanged among peoples since decade. Though farmers has been cultivating same crop from centuries on the same piece of land, method and system of farming has been changes. With change in climatic pattern and surrounding atmosphere, farmers are changing the way of farming to cope with the change. And this has been possible only through communication and information. Farmers are aware about the change and means to cope with the change through Information and Communication. Information is needed in every phase of farming. Agriculture is also prone to various risk which are inevitable such as climate hazard, crop failure etc. But with advancement in ICT like GPS and GIS system and weather forecasting these risk can be limited to some extent. Various modes and methods of ICT have been implemented in farming with time and this has helped farming achieve its goals and objectives efficiently.
Agriculture now is facing new and inevitable challenges. Global population is expected to hike higher and for this agriculture production is to be increased by folds. With this pressure on agriculture has intensified. But it is a kismet that with these challenges the arrival of Information and Communication Technology has coincide. With the introduction of green revolution the need of production was meet to some extent. Furthermore revolution is required to increase the productivity for feeding the world in near future. So to address these challenges more effective solution is required. And for this ICT can be an effective solution that have immense potential to improve agriculture specially in developing and resource poor country like Nepal.
In Nepal, Agriculture is a crucial sector providing livelihood to approximately 70% of the population. Despite of substantial involvement of population in farming, country still has to import vast portion of consumption from outside. And with this scope and potential of ICT in Agriculture in Nepalese context has further more amplified. ICT no doubt can play a crucial role in dissemination of innovation and modern technology and help farmer adopt such technology. ICT can take farming at a new level. This need has been felt and amalgamation of ICT in agriculture has mushroom in past few years in the country. Advancement of technology in the country and accessibility, affordability and adaptability of ICT has made farmer easier to adapt to such technology. With telecommunication and Internet accessible in almost every corner of the country, farmers can learn about advancement in agriculture and innovation with ease. ICT can even raise livelihood and capacity building of small holder farmers in a quick pace. One of the best examples would be mobile phones. With its accessibility and affordability people can access to various information as well as share ideas among one another with ease. SMS services about market values of various commodities can be accessed in various part of the country. Recent development of a mobile apps “Smart Krishi” and “Krishi Ghar” are landmark in ICT in Agriculture in Nepal. With this farmers can access to information related to agriculture in their fingertips. Information and communication technology like such can be a bridge to connect innovations to the farmers. Farmers can even get access to market values of various commodities through the use of these apps. Also there are various radio and television program broadcasting which discuss about various issues on agriculture as well as provide expertise advice and suggestion to farmers in need. Also government has been providing Toll free numbers and call centre to provide information about agriculture and has also established various contact centers under District Agricultural Office for access of information and other facilities to the farmers. Though limited intervention has been done towards application of ICT in agriculture in Nepal, its outcomes are mesmerizing. Since application of ICT in agriculture is found to be fruitful through its initial application, government along with farmers and stakeholders are exited for its widespread extension and further more accessibility to the farmers and entrepreneurs. Meanwhile ICT has proven to be a milestone in agriculture in Nepal.