Affordable weather insurance for Kenyan farmers

Bit by bit, Kenyan farmers can now pay off affordable insurance premiums and have the peace of mind that their crops will be protected in the event of adverse weather

World Bank has launched an insurance for Kenyan farmers that starts coverage at KES 50 per month. Photo: Supplied/World Bank

World Bank has launched an insurance for Kenyan farmers that starts coverage at KES 50 per month. Photo: Supplied/World Bank

More than 70 000 Kenyan farmers now have access to affordable weather insurance which is envisioned to help them mitigate crop failure due to adverse weather patterns. This is thanks to the World Bank Group which launched its weather index-based insurance.

What’s great about this offering is that its pricing model ensures that most farmers, 89% of whom had never accessed insurance services before, can now afford insurance, experts say. Farmers are making use of this new innovation through the World Bank’s One Million Farmers Platform.

“It offers farmers tailored crop insurance plans to help them mitigate crop failure due to adverse weather patterns. This is accomplished through the use of a micro-insurance product known as Bima Pima, which loosely translates to ‘insurance in affordable bits’,” the World Bank said via a statement.

How it works

Muthithi Kinyanjui, who is the head of partnerships and market systems at Acre Africa, explained the process.

“At the start of the agricultural season, a farmer buys a Bima Pima scratch card with a bag of seeds or fertiliser, activates the card through his phone, pays an initial premium of KES 50 ($.50 cents), and can top-up via SMS to increase the level of insurance coverage. ACRE Africa then geo-tags the farm using the mobile localisation service,” said Kinyanjui.

A combination of satellite and weather station data then determines whether the farmer will receive a payout directly on their mobile account in case of drought or excess rain on his land.

Mix of smart design and digital innovation

The mix of smart design and digital innovation offers the farmers the ease of buying the scratch cards at local agri-dealers, use of the system, the capability to top up, and the options to pay for the premium in small amounts and over time.

This article was written by Lucinda Dordley and originally published on FoodForAfrika.com.

Read the full story here.

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