Of the nearly 1 billion people who are chronically hungry, 60 percent are smallholder farmers – farmers who work small plots of land, often providing the only food and income their family has access to. Rising temperatures and shifting rain patterns due to climate change are impacting farming systems across the world, especially small and marginal farmers.
When crops fail, most small farmers are forced to go hungry and to sell their assets simply to survive, deepening their poverty. Very few small farmers currently have access to formal insurance that protects against crop failure or loss of an asset such as livestock or housing. Microinsurance is a powerful solution to the problem.
Microinsurance products help farmers to maintain food security by compensating them financially if they lose their crops, and just as importantly microinsurance pays out much more swiftly than humanitarian aid and therefore helps affected people to avoid having to sell assets.
This month we are raising awareness amongst UK Parliamentarians and Ministers about this new, powerful intervention and asking them to ensure it is part of any international climate change agreements.
Our expert guest speaker is Richard Leftley from MicroEnsure.