Exploring Innovative Digital Pathways for Horticulture Market Linkage in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand


Exploring Innovative Digital Pathways for Horticulture Market Linkage in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand



This Request for Proposal (RFP) signifies a collaborative initiative between JICA DX Lab and the Governments of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, aiming to select a technology solution provider (Digital Partner) for a Proof of Concept (PoC) project. The primary objective of the PoC is to validate the effectiveness of a digital/technology solution in elevating the income of farmers by offering market linkage solutions for vegetables and fruits. This includes establishing direct links to buyers, eliminating intermediaries, and improving price realization. The successful completion of the PoC will trigger an evaluation of the solution's feasibility for scaled deployment. The Digital Partner is expected to implement this solution in a minimum of two districts in Himachal Pradesh and at least one district in Uttarakhand, targeting a minimum of 1000 farmers per district. The maximum budget allocation for services is set at USD 150,000, inclusive of all associated taxes and expenses; however, it is worth noting that this budget may be subject to adjustment based on the final PoC plan and related costs. Timely progress reports will provide detailed project analysis and data-driven insights, culminating in a comprehensive final report encompassing PoC results, activities, quantitative and qualitative evaluations based on predetermined KPIs, along with technical, operational, and strategic recommendations for PMU teams of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand and JICA.


The PoC, scheduled to commence with a setup phase in December 2023, followed by an implementation phase in January 2024, will span a duration of 9-12 months.





Nestled in Himalayas, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, combines fertile land and favorable weather to establish themselves as prominent players in the horticulture industry. These state’s cool climate allows year-round cultivation of key vegetables like peas, tomatoes, potatoes, cauliflower, cabbage, etc. boosting their agriculture output. Himachal Pradesh excels not only in vegetable production, with a value exceeding INR 3,000 Cr and over 18 Lakh tonnes of vegetables but also in fruit production, surpassing 10 Lakh tonnes per year. Similarly, horticulture sector in Uttarakhand contributes significantly to the state’s economy, with vegetables generating over INR 1,500 Cr and annual vegetable production exceeding 10 Lakh tonnes. Fruit production, including apples, pears, plums, peaches, apricots, etc. exceeds 6 Lakh tonnes annually. Despite their potential, both the states face challenges, primarily inefficient market access and farmers relying on intermediaries, resulting in 10-15% lower prices than prevailing market rates. Supply chain costs further erode profits, with a substantial 30% loss in the value of horticultural produce.
In Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, collaborative endeavors between the government and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) are underway to enhance farmers' livelihoods. JICA has committed over $100 million in Official Development Assistance (ODA) loans to both states, supporting projects focused on improving agricultural productivity, promoting sustainable crop diversification, and increasing farmers' incomes.

In alignment with these efforts, this RFP is being initiated for the PoC to identify a digital partner capable of complementing JICA and governments initiatives by providing digital market linkage solutions to farmers, facilitating better access to markets for selling their horticultural produce and leading to improved price realization and higher farm incomes.

Join us in revolutionizing the horticulture landscape of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand through digital innovation in the agricultural value chain. Let's work together to make a lasting impact and empower farmers to enhance their livelihoods with the power of technology and collaboration.



Dr. Sunil Chauhan

Director, Himachal Pradesh Crop Diversification Promotion Project

Diverse agro-climatic conditions prevailing in the state of Himachal Pradesh are very congenial for diversification of agriculture, particularly towards high value cash crops. The state can rightly be called as natural glass house due to variety of agro-climatic conditions prevailing in different zones. The PoC project with JICA on Digital Agri-marketplace is an endeavor to support the HP government to fetch good prices for the farming community as low consumption of fertilizer & pesticide coupled with congenial agro-climatic condition are advantageous for promoting safe and healthy agricultural produce. The digital platform will assist in transformation of agriculture sector in the state by enabling farmers to make data-driven decisions and optimizing crop production and supply chain activities. Ultimately, this will support the growth and success of farmers in the state and beyond.

Dr. Sunil Chauhan


Maria Kato

Japan International Cooperation Agency/Representative of JICA India Office

JICA's support to the agriculture sector in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand started in 2021 by providing concessional loans to the projects of the states’ Horticulture Departments.
Since then, JICA is encouraging the use of technology to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the projects and is also pursuing to create societal impact through digital technology and data.
Uplifting farmer’s income is one of the serious challenges in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand that requires immediate action utilizing cutting-edge technologies and innovative solutions. To address this challenge through our projects, we are looking forward to collaborating with digital partners.

Maria Kato



  • The Digital Partner must possess significant expertise in delivering market linkage solutions to diverse farming communities across different regions of the country.
  • The management of the Digital Partner does not include individuals with a history of corruption, arrest records, or affiliations with criminal organizations.


  • 対象地域
    Himachal Pradesh: The Digital Partner must choose at least 2 districts, with one of them chosen from Mandi, Kangra, Una, Bilaspur, or Hamirpur.
    Uttarakhand: The Digital Partner must choose at least 1 district from Nainital, Pithoragarh, Tehri Garhwal, and Uttarkashi.
  • 対象作物
    The primary focus for the PoC will be on vegetables such as peas, tomatoes, cabbage, cauliflower, exotic vegetables like broccoli, etc. and fruits like apples, peach, plum, pear, apricot, etc.
  • PoC向けデジタル・ソリューション
    The Digital Partner must facilitate market linkage for farmers growing vegetables and fruits within the targeted districts, with the overall aim of increasing their income. The Digital Partner must also provide market information on prices and demand trends and may also provide solutions to support the supply chain such as aggregation or sorting/grading or processing or logistics.
  • 準備段階で求められる内容
    The Digital Partner shall align on the PoC plan with all the stakeholders and finalize the impact metrics to define the success of the PoC. Additionally, The Digital Partner should review data and reports available in the Related Materials section and identify local partners, if required.
  • 実施段階で求められる内容
    The Digital Partner will onboard farmers onto the platform, provide necessary training to them or local partners if needed, and execute the proposed digital solution on ground. This includes commencing the procurement of produce from farmers for sale.


Electronic submission must be received at JICADXLab@bcg.com by the latest 23:59 Japan Standard Time on Nov 5, 2023.


USD 150,000 including all taxes and expenses, however negotiable.


RFP includes detailed information, including the project background, target location and crops, and proposal format. Please visit for details.


Info Session

【終了しました】We plan to host an information session for bidders in the last week of October 27th, 2023, 12:30-1:30 PM (IST) / 4:00-5:00 PM (JST)If you wish to participate, please contact us at JICADXLab@bcg.com.

Update: the session was held on October 27th and please access to the presentation material.See PDF for details.

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