Agritech start-up launches new digital farmers’ market in Zambia; Plans expansion to 5
countries and network of container farms

HRVST aims to connect consumers and restaurants directly to local farmers, increasing access
to fresh produce while also expanding the market for local farmers (say goodbye to the

Aiponics, a leading AgriTech startup, announced the launch of Hrvst, a digital farmers’ market
designed to make it more convenient for consumers and restaurants to get local produce. The
platform has launched in Zambia and already boasts seventy-nine restaurant partners across
Lusaka and hundreds of early-access users registered all serviced by over twenty farmers,
small and large.
The Hrvst platform allows farmers to list their produce and sell directly to end-users and
restaurants, making it easier and more affordable for buyers and sellers. The platform already
has an impressive set of features tailored to support and enable each end-user to maximize the
power of the platform.

The Vendor app – Includes integrated point-of-sale feature to facilitate cashless transactions
using mobile money and credit card payments, performance analytics, order management and
fleet management.

The Driver app – View assigned orders, route optimization and delivery completion validation
The Customer app – Order fresh food from an impressive array of local vendors to be delivered
or pick up at designated locations, schedule future orders and explore nutritional benefits of
foods listed.
The Aiponics team plans to continue growing the already rich set of features on Hrvst
including integrating third-party delivery providers to add delivery capacity for small-scale
farmers that might have difficulty with fulfillment.

Deploying network of container farms

Beyond the Hrvst marketplace, Aiponics is also building a container-based aquaponic farm
franchise model. The team plans to train local marketeers and young farmers in aquaponics to
create additional local capacity and empower more people to get out of poverty. Founded by
Christopher Chileshe, Aiponics envisions deploying a network of container farms that will
significantly reduce the farm-to-table distance while providing high-quality fresh produce, crop
diversity, and food security to African communities. The Hrvst marketplace will serve as a
source of demand for container farm produce by plugging directly into the communities
through an integration with the app, listing the container as a vendor. The team playfully refers
to this as the ‘vegetable vending machine’ model.
Chris lays out this vision as:
“With many parts of Africa facing a food crisis and the inherent risk of relying on other nations
for food security, there has never been a better time to bring innovation and technology into a
space that sorely needs it. We’re focused on creating hyper-local capacity for food security
while increasing the quality and diversity of the food available to every person on the
continent. “
To help execute this vision, Aiponics is proud to announce that Curtis Madden has joined as
CEO. Curtis has a diverse business background spanning investments, real estate, and food
service distribution. He believes that Zambia and indeed Africa must find its own Afrocentric
solutions to the challenges it faces. He would like to play his part in helping to unravel these
intricacies by architecting solutions that are sustainable, accessible, and affordable to the
masses using local talent and expertise.
“I couldn’t be more excited to join a mission-driven team with such an ambitious vision. We’re
reshaping an entire ecosystem by vertically aligning the complete supply chain and injecting
technology every step of the way to bring about social good that will be sustainable long after
we’re gone,” says Curtis.
Curtis will be leading Aiponics’ aggressive growth plans which include expanding the Hrvst
marketplace into five other African countries in the next two years and launching the first
container farm franchise in Lusaka, Zambia.
The official launch event for Hrvst is on July 9th in Lusaka, Zambia. For more information on
how to attend to go

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