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2. Crop Price Info 101

Problem Statement

Over 100 million smallholder farmers in India require actionable and real-time data insights to make informed decisions. However, they encounter significant challenges due to information, knowledge, and network asymmetries when attempting to maximize their incomes. The Indian government allocates over $400 million annually to gather data on farm livelihoods, such as crop prices, weather conditions, and crop advisories. Yet, most of these datasets are dispersed across fragmented sources with complex UI/UX designs, making it difficult for farmers with limited digital literacy to access and utilize this information. Consequently, they often resort to relying on word-of-mouth from neighbors and family members. At worst, farmers may only receive this information from traders and agricultural input shops, who may have conflicting incentives to provide accurate information. This scenario leaves rural households vulnerable to unsustainable income and a diminished quality of life. In India, over 30 million households are on the brink of falling back into extreme poverty, potentially undoing most of the progress achieved under the Sustainable Development Goals.

A particular area of concern is the accessibility of accurate and up-to-date crop price information. Farmers need this information to make informed decisions regarding when and at what price to sell their crops. The optimal reference point is the price at neighboring agricultural markets, known as Mandis. The government developed AGMARKNET to aggregate data from Mandis across India. This database, publicly accessible, is widely utilized by startups and NGOs to display crop prices on their websites and mobile applications, benefiting over 20 million farmers.


What is a mandi?

Mandis are agricultural markets regulated by the Agricultural Produce and Marketing Committee (APMC) Act. Most state governments in India has enacted APMC acts in different years in 1960-70s. While their shape and form differs, they can be understood as physical space where crops are sold in open auction under the supervision of a regulatory body and government employees.

What is a sales receipt?

In the mandi, after each auction, the seller immediately receives a paper-based sales receipt from the mandi official. This sales receipt contains a wealth of information and is the most authoritative document on the sale of that particular crop lot. Each mandi has a different template of receipt but most have the main datapoints of date, mandi name, crop name, variety name, seller name, buyer name, quantity, and price.

Image of a receipt

Daily Trade Analysis

At the end of the day the mandi staff prepares the aggregate data of trade happened in the mandi that day. It contains calculating total quantity sold for each crop-variety and the minimum, maximum and average price received per crop-variety.

Image of analysis report prepared by the mandi staff

Format of the table in the Daily trade analysis report

Market Name


Crop (Variety)

Total quantity sold by all sellers

Minimum price received by a seller

Average price received by sellers

Maximum price received by a seller









Agmarknet is the public database portal developed by Indian Government in early 2000s to facilitate collection and dissemination of market information and data for its efficient and timely utilisation by the farmers. At the end of the day, the Mandi staff is responsible for uploading Daily Trade Analysis to a central public database known as Agmarknet.

State portals

Given that agriculture is a state subject, most state also have their independent web portals to collect and disseminate price information from their mandis in their respective states. Below is the detail of this portals in different portals and their status as on May 2023.


Website URL



Main price database in India


E-Nam is a digital marketplace run by the government of India


Andhra Pradesh

No state-level price database is available


Arunachal Pradesh

No state-level price database is available



Site exists, but no data


No state-level price database is available



Prices database available


No state-level price database is available


No state-level price database is available


Uses E-NAM

Himachal Pradesh

Not updating prices anymore - also had them yearly

Jammu and Kashmir

No state-level price database is available




No state-level price database is available



Madhya Pradesh

Prices database available


Prices database available


No state price, uses Agmarknet


Prices database available


No state-level price database is available



No state-level price database is available



No state-level price database is available


Prices database available


No state prices, uses Agmarknet

Tamil Nadu

Prices database available


Prices database available


No state prices, uses Agmarknet

Uttar Pradesh

Prices database available


Broken website uses Agmarknet

West Bengal

Uses E-NAM

What are private players are doing?

Players in the agri-tech ecosystem often utilize a combination of Agmarknet and state-level databases to show crop prices to their users. A handful of players also add their own proprietary data they have collected themselves from different markets.

List of websites that provide mandi prices

Websites that show mandi prices use advertisements as the main source of revenue. In Addition, they are hundreds of Android Application that shows mandi price information as an additive service to their core information.


🤔 The initiatives involving websites and mobile applications are not accessible to individuals with limited digital literacy. Given that WhatsApp is often the first app people engage with upon starting to use a smartphone, we envisioned integrating the public crop price database into WhatsApp. In the following chapter, learn how we utilized WhatsApp to create a chatbot tailored for users with limited literacy, thus enabling them to access the public crop price database.

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