Nagpur, Oct 16 (UNI) Reuters Market Light, the market information service for farmers launched by Reuters news agency in Maharashtra earlier this month, will be rolled out in three more states next year.
Speaking to reporters here today, Reuters Market Light Managing Director Amit Mehra said that the states would be any three from Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab and Tamil Nadu. ''We also have plans to launch the service in other countries, but this will come later,'' he said.
The service currently covered cotton, maize, onion, moong, corn and soyabear, Mr Mehra said. It would cover all major commodities and 60 major markets in Maharashtra by the end of this year, he said.
''The service, launched on October 1 last month, has more than 4,000 paying subscribers in Maharashtra. We have a target of enrolling 30,000 subscribers in the state by the end of 2007,'' the Managing Director said.
Mr Mehra said that India was the first country and Maharashtra the first state where the service was launched. ''We did so because the mobile telephone density in Maharashtra is quite high, and there is considerable volume of trade in soybear, which is an important commodity,'' he said.
Farmers subscribing to the service in Maharashtra get SMS alerts on their mobile telephones in Marathi about the weather outlook, the benchmark price and the price in the nearest markets of the commodities covered, crop advisories and news, Mr Mehra said.
The aim is to provide farmers accurate, timely and relevant information so that they can get the best price for their produce, he said. The service has an office in Pune, and there are plans to open one in Nagpur shortly, he added.