New microinsurance pilot in India to provide weather risk protection for fruit

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Agriculture Insurance Company of India is preparing to begin offering weather insurance cover for mangos and apples in selected producing blocks in Himachal, India. This pilot scheme is being run to assess whether the product works for the insured, insurer and government prior to a larger rollout (if successful).

Fifty percent of premiums in this pilot will be paid by the insured with the remainder paid by the state and central governments. The scheme is compulsory for any growers who have a sanctioned credit limit from a financial institution. This is a really good idea as it means those who stand to the lose the most from a weather event which impacts their crop will definitely be covered. In microinsurance terms this will help to ensure the financial health of the community not just the farmer.

The product will provide the following coverage; for apple crops it will cover chilling requirement, temperature fluctuations, deficit or excess rainfall while for mangoes it will cover frost, temperature fluctuations, rainfall and wind speed. Unfortunately the one peril that fruit growers in this region of India have specified as the largest risk, hail, is not covered here. A few months ago when this project was being designed there was press coverage in India where local farmers said that any cover to emerge really needed to provide hail cover too.

Read more on the My Himachal website.

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