When we look at the agricultural value chain in our communities that begins with the suppliers of inputs such as the tools, seeds and fertilizers then to the primary production points of plants and animal rearing, and then to the processors and marketers; it is the primary producers who carry the highest risk of failure than the sellers of inputs, transporters, processors or the marketers. Banks and insurance companies are willing to deal with all other actors in the agricultural value chain mentioned above but reluctant to deal with primary producers – the small holder farmers who actually supply the bulk of the food we eat.
Rain failures, prolonged droughts, pests, diseases, poor soil fertility, and expensive fertilizers/inputs combine to keep food security out of reach for the small holder farmers. MAMAH has designed a ‘Community-based Famers’ Seed Insurance Fund’ to compensate member farmers’ seed crops and animals (chicken, rabbits…) in cases of unforeseen catastrophes. Losses out of sheer negligence are not covered.
Objectives of the Community-based Farmers’ Seed Insurance Fund:
- To motivate farming communities to venture more into food production despite the manifold challenges facing them
- To ensure continuity of farming activities in the event of total loss during proceeding seasons and hence avoid seasonal hunger.
- To encourage the spirit of solidarity, self help and home grown solutions.
- To contribute to increased community resilience to external shocks related to the fragility of agriculture.
- To pilot a model for small holder/peasant farmers’ insurance schemes.
Its’ called a seed insurance fund because the compensation covers only the seed investment either of the crop or animal to enable the small holder farmer to begin again/continue.