Making Livelihoods Better Through Agriculture Crop Insurance With Support From FAO 

PR –The Ministry of Agriculture is optimistic about the success and potential positive impact of the Agriculture Risk Insurance product which is being  implemented with support from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).  

This project was initiated in response to the devastating impact on the agriculture sector by  hurricanes Ivan and Emily in 2004 and 2005 respectively, which destroyed 99 % of nutmeg and cocoa plantations. The decision was taken to pilot this project in the cocoa and nutmeg sub-sectors  as the relevant data was available. 

Hon. Peter David, Minister for Agriculture, Lands, and Forestry, anticipates a positive impact on  the lives of sector stakeholders. 

He said, “Implementing such a project is an innovative response that will help farmers rebound  faster and reduce the burden on government, to restore livelihoods after major weather events. It  also serves as a catalyst for extending credit to farmers covered by insurance.” 

The Agriculture Minister was delivering remarks at the 37th Conference of the FAO in Latin  America and the Caribbean, recently held in Ecuador. Minister David and colleague Agriculture  Ministers from Latin America and the Caribbean met to evaluate the work done by FAO in their  respective countries over the last two years and to agree on recommendations for initiatives and  priorities that will guide the organisation’s work during 2022-2023. 

Updating the meeting on the progress made he noted that, “the Ministry has completed the hybrid  insurance product design – incorporating parametric and indemnity insurance – which covers  losses associated with wind; completed modeling of wind speed component and risk analysis; and  selected insurance broker, Willis Towers Watson, to approach the reinsurance market in search of  the optimal price.” 

The Ministry of Agriculture has been collaborating with the Food and Agriculture Organisation  (FAO) to develop an insurance scheme for farmers as part of a pilot project that was also  implemented in Jamaica and St Vincent and the Grenadines.

Reflecting on the experiences with the COVID-19 pandemic, climatic risks, and the ongoing  Russia-Ukraine Conflict, the Minister said implementing a project of such magnitude can help  countries within Latin America and the Caribbean redouble their efforts toward the attainment of  food and nutrition security. 

It is anticipated that the insurance product can be implemented fully before the start of the 2023  Atlantic Hurricane Season.