S.U.N.M.Mangurai, A.Solikhin, E.A.Octaviani, Anidah

Source: SEAMEO BIOTROP's Research Grant | 2021


The Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted agro-food supply chains and a substantial shift in demand and composition of food and agriculture commodities.One of the strategies to address the disruption is by applying digital technologies in food and agriculture sector, and during the pandemic, digitisation and digitalisation have been accelerated by the GoI as one of the strategies for economic recovery. This study systematically mapped the studies and the applications of digital technology use in the food and agriculture sector, and analyzed the implications of the Covid-19 pandemic on digital technologies research and applications of the sector. A systematic review evidence evaluation was harnessed for this study to obtain data, which subsequently was translated into a thematic map and an interactive map.

The study showed that Covid-19 has hampered some food and agriculture activities but has positively accelerated digital technologies for the sector. Digital technologies, studied and utilized for Indonesia's food and agriculture sector, are primarily websites, the internet of things (IoT), GPS and GIS technology, artificial intelligence (AI), big data, and robotic. About 22.83% of reviewed literature discussed the ripple effects of the pandemic on digitalized food and agriculture sector in Indonesia. Digital studies are still concentrated on the island of Java, as seen at this interactive map: although internet penetration and the proportion of individuals using the internet have increased in the last five years.

This study reported that the Government of Indonesia (GoI) had issued national initiatives and policies supporting digital technologies in the food and agriculture sectors. However, a minimal number of both initiatives and policy has mainstreamed the Covid-19 pandemic. An interactive map of digital agriculture companies can be found at this link: and most of the companies are in the form of farmers advisory, mechanization platforms, digital marketplace, e-commerce, traceability, food delivery, and peer-to-peer lending. These applications are primarily concentrated in Java island and have benefited digital technologies, such as IoT, blockchain, artificial intelligence, smartphone or android, mobile apps, GPS/GIS, and drones. Start-up companies have applied strategic measures to cope with the pandemic implications, and some activities of the companies are suspended.

The GoI has initiated the transformation earlier than the establishment of ASEAN Digital Transformation initiatives. These strategies and agendas at the regional level were made during the pandemic and one of the recovery measures to deal with the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. To date, regional "call for action" initiatives on agriculture digitisation and digitalisation are still limited although these initiatives have integrated national strategies and agendas from ASEAN Member States (AMSs), especially Indonesia. ASEAN agriculture 4.0 initiatives need to be more actualized to the ground supported with good management of project lifecycle to achieve the intended deliverables.

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