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TaniHub: Bringing Indonesian farmers a fair price for their goods with Google Cloud data solutions

About TaniHub

TaniHub Group is Indonesia’s leading agri-tech platform supplying the food & beverages industry. Its B2B agriculture marketplace connects farmers with food, hotel, restaurant and catering businesses, deploying AI algorithms to discover fair price points for buyers and sellers. TaniHub's mission is to enable better lives for farmers and support the growth of agriculture as the backbone of the Indonesian economy. It seeks to reduce food waste and support sustainability, while delighting customers with fresh and healthy produce. Founded in 2016, the Jakarta-based platform is driven by business values that consist of social impact, excellence and innovation.

Industries: Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing
Location: Indonesia

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Tanihub develops an innovative agri-tech B2B marketplace, transforms its AI capabilities with end-to-end data integration, and unleashes unlimited scaling power for big data insight with Google Cloud solutions.

Google Cloud results

  • Accelerates data analytics by reducing database replication setup time from one week to two days
  • Frees engineering team to focus on app innovation by cutting two hours of DevOps time per week
  • Enables reliable machine learning insights with data pipeline latencies in the order of minutes
  • Enables investment in AI technology through 20% reduction of data processing costs

End-to-end integration of all data processing tasks

In 2015, a group of Indonesian social entrepreneurs witnessed the plight of tomato farmers who were throwing away tomatoes, because prices were so low that selling them was not worth the transportation costs. The dilemma inspired them to found TaniHub, an agri-tech B2B marketplace that empowers farmers by connecting them directly with food businesses such as restaurants and groceries, ensuring a fair price for their goods.

TaniHub deploys proprietary AI algorithms to predict supply and demand based on current and historic data for a granular readout on price points that favor both buyers and sellers. The social enterprise also offers farmers supply chain and warehousing services to drive operational efficiencies that translate into higher earnings.

Beginning life on a local cloud provider, TaniHub found itself facing challenges as it grew with real-time scaling for intermittent spikes in demand for agricultural procurement data. Specifically, the startup struggled to create seamless data pipelines on the legacy provider's conventional Extract, Transform, Load (ETL) data platform, to send into its data warehouse for crunching through AI algorithms.

"What set Google Cloud apart was a comprehensive data ecosystem that fully automates the powerful data pipelines flowing into BigQuery, for timely insight on procurement planning. Superior managed services free up our team from mundane provisioning, enabling us to focus on helping farmers succeed."

Wulung Anggara Hanandita, Vice President of Data, TaniHub

TaniHub sought to transform its data capabilities on a global public cloud through both a nimble microservices architecture and managed data services that offered end-to-end integration of all data operations. These ran from data storage to data pipelines, and ultimately processing in the data warehouse.

After considering all major providers, TaniHub chose Google Cloud because of what it viewed as a "fully integrated data ecosystem" that enables seamless interplay of data services such as Pub/Sub, Cloud SQL, Dataflow, Datastream and finally BigQuery for powerful data insight. The startup also saw the advantage of tapping Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE) for its microservices-based architecture, because of Google's leadership in developing Kubernetes.

According to Wulung Anggara Hanandita, Vice President of Data, TaniHub, the decision unleashed timely data analytics power to drive TaniHub's social enterprise mission to "enable better lives for farmers" and become Indonesia's largest and fastest-growing agri-tech startup.

"What set Google Cloud apart was a comprehensive data ecosystem that fully automates the powerful data pipelines flowing into BigQuery, for real-time insight on procurement planning," says Hanandita. "Superior managed services free up our team from mundane provisioning, enabling us to focus on helping farmers succeed."

Woman in a vegetable farm

Unleashing platform creativity with integrated data services

With TaniHub's original cloud provider, the data team needed to spend vast amounts of time on data planning, calculating how many database rows and gigabytes it would need to meet AI modeling needs. It then had to create a separate contract for each new data service it built, and wait for the vendor to provision virtual machines and databases.

Turning to Google Cloud solved those issues. Not only was cloud storage cheaper on Google Cloud, all data tasks scaled automatically on a pay-as-you-go basis, removing estimates for provisioning needs, or paying up-front costs.

To perform data analytics, TaniHub replicates data from its transactional database into its analytical database using Cloud SQL. It then deploys a combination of Pub/Sub, Datastream and Dataflow to create autoscaling data pipelines into BigQuery, with latencies in the order of minutes.

Meanwhile, Cloud Composer plays a key supporting role by enabling the team to schedule and monitor data pipelines workflows for ingesting huge volumes of data into BigQuery. All of these services coalesce in one seamless and integrated data workflow, unleashing the creative energies of TaniHub's developers.

Woman inspecting vegetables

"As a lean startup, it's critical for us to reduce infrastructure maintenance," says Hanandita. "With managed services such as Cloud SQL, Pub/Sub, Dataflow, Datastream, and BigQuery all seamlessly harmonized, our team wins more time to deliver business value, without tinkering with infrastructure."

Overall, Hanandita says TaniHub is saving 20% on data processing costs using Google Cloud data services, funds it can plow into investing in AI technology to build its solutions. He adds that the cost savings are not just for fixed and variable infrastructure costs, but also efficiencies gained from being able to operate with a lean technology team.

On TaniHub's original provider, says Hanandita, it took a week for the data engineering team to set up a new database and create data pipelines that went into its data warehouse for AI analytics. Now, thanks to the automated end-to-end data system integration of Google Cloud, the time required for the whole process has been reduced to just two days.

The engineering team, meanwhile, saves up to two hours per week from mundane provisioning tasks, which it then can devote to creative solution building. GKE also enables TaniHub to absorb sudden intermittent surges in B2B order demand, while instantly scaling down once the peak has passed. That saves an estimated 10% to 15% in computing costs compared to its original architecture.

"With Google Cloud autoscaling, we gain huge benefits that enable us to allocate our resources to app development, instead of paying for computing resources that aren't even being used," says Edwin Setiawan, Engineering Manager, TaniHub.

"As a lean startup, it's critical for us to reduce infrastructure maintenance. With managed services such as Cloud SQL, Pub/Sub, Dataflow, Datastream and BigQuery, all seamlessly harmonized, our team wins more time to deliver business value, without tinkering with infrastructure."

Wulung Anggara Hanandita, Vice President of Data, TaniHub

Nurturing the future of Indonesian farming with AI and data processing tools

In the next stage of its development, TaniHub is planning to further bolster its data processing and data science analytics capabilities for even greater precision in modeling farming supply and demand. According to the company, Google Cloud machine learning tools such as BigQuery ML and Vertex AI are good examples of products which may support the efforts.

TaniHub also looks forward to deploying Google Cloud's new version of Dataflow, Dataflow Prime, to get data into BigQuery easier, faster and cheaper. This is thanks to the way the new service frees users completely from the task of managing CPU and random access memory (RAM).

"There's no end to the ways we can supercharge our data systems with Google Cloud solutions such as Dataflow Prime and AI solutions such as Vertex AI," says Hanandita. "It will enable us to forge an exciting new future for Indonesian agriculture."

"With Google Cloud autoscaling, we gain huge benefits that enable us to allocate our resources to app development, instead of paying for computing resources that aren't even being used."

Edwin Setiawan, Engineering Manager, TaniHub

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About TaniHub

TaniHub Group is Indonesia’s leading agri-tech platform supplying the food & beverages industry. Its B2B agriculture marketplace connects farmers with food, hotel, restaurant and catering businesses, deploying AI algorithms to discover fair price points for buyers and sellers. TaniHub's mission is to enable better lives for farmers and support the growth of agriculture as the backbone of the Indonesian economy. It seeks to reduce food waste and support sustainability, while delighting customers with fresh and healthy produce. Founded in 2016, the Jakarta-based platform is driven by business values that consist of social impact, excellence and innovation.

Industries: Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing
Location: Indonesia