The government in Kenya has set aside 117 million shillings for farmers who registered crop losses last year.
Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya noted that under the crop yield insurance programme, farmers spread across 28 counties will benefit from the fund.
“This payout is to those who would have otherwise lost everything to the vagaries of weather. We are enhancing farming by ensuring it is not a trial and error venture – thus making farming a preferable investment,” Munya said.
Part of the funding will be provided by the State to those who had insured their crops. CS Munya said that the process will commence once an assessment has been done by the insurer.
CS Munya noted that the ministry is keen on looking out for the best way of adding value to the local farmers. He said that through partnership with private insurance firms, the government assures farmers of their livelihood.
The current insurance program launched in 2016 now covers more than 33 counties in Kenya and has seen the government pay 50 per cent of the premiums for farmers with 20,000 acres and below.
For compensation in case of lose, the farming zones are divided into an area yield. If average production in one of the units falls below a threshold, then all insured farmers receive a payout.
The 117 million shillings will only be paid out to insured farmers who grew maize, beans, green grams and wheat. The Ministry noted that those whose crops were destroyed by Locusts will not benefit because the policy didn’t cover the crops against the infestation.
The compensation comes at a time when the country is struggling to control the coronavirus pandemic. The situation has brought about loss of jobs in various sectors including the agricultural sector.
In trying to deal with the problem of job losses, the government is keen on encouraging the population to venture into farming in both small and large scale. Apart from the insurance payouts, the government has also made it easy for individuals to receive subsidized farm inputs wherever they are through the recently launched online platform.