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Weather cover launched for grape growers

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ICICI Lombard policy to benefit 4 Maharashtra districts

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Protecting cultivators


Applicable

from June 1 for 10 months

Sum insured

per policy unit is Rs 50,000

Policy

to cover six weather perils

Pune, May 30

ICICI Lombard General Insurance has launched a weather insurance policy for grape cultivators in the Pune, Nashik, Solapur and Sangli districts of Maharashtra to help minimise financial loss and safeguard their production costs from a possible crop failure due to uncertain weather conditions.

The weather insurance applicable from June 1 for 10 months has been designed on the basis of the historical temperature and rainfall data of Nashik District.

Policy design

According to Mr Pranav Prashad, Head - Rural and Agriculture Business Group, ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company, a single policy unit has been designed keeping in mind input costs for one acre of cultivated land, which is approximately Rs 1 lakh for export-oriented grape fields and Rs 50,000 for domestic grape fields.

The sum insured per policy unit is Rs 50,000.

Farmers growing grapes for exports can buy two units or more, he said.

Six weather perils covered

He said the weather insurance for grapes would cover six weather perils related to rainfall and temperature, including excessive rainfall, deficit rainfall, continuous rainfall, unseasonal rainfall, high temperature and diurnal temperature in seven different phases.

The compensation would be separate for each phase and would be subject to a maximum limit of the sum insured for that particular peril or time period.

The seven phases included are excessive rainfall cover during fruit bud differentiation stage, which leads to vigorous growth and reduced fruitfulness; excessive rainfall cover during resting and storage stage, which leads to new sprouting, leaf fall and early pruning; deficit rainfall cover during the second half of resting and storage stage; continuous rainfall cover during fruit set stage, which leads to diseases, flower drop and more setting; excessive rainfall cover during ripening and harvesting stage, which leads to berry cracking and post-harvest rotting; high temperature cover during berry growth, which leads to sun burn; and diurnal temperature difference cover during harvesting, which leads to berry cracking.

Compensation

Mr Prashad pointed out that for the first phase where excessive rainfall leads to vigorous growth and reduced fruitfulness during June 1-20, ICICI Lombard would pay compensation for excess rainfall, which is beyond 150 mm for that period.

It would pay the entire sum insured for that phase, if the rainfall is more than 275 mm.

The company will not pay any compensation if rainfall recorded is below 150 mm during the same period. Similar parameters have been defined for each phase, he said.

Simple process

The process is simple as any grape-farmer could visit an authorised selling agent and fill up a simple proposal form.

A receipt would be given to the farmer, which needs to be shown at the time of claim.

He said the weather data would be regularly procured by the Indian Meteorological Department station or other weather stations established by National Collateral Management Services Ltd and submitted to a professional weather data-cleaning and enhancing agency for verification.

These weather stations would be located at Nashik, Dindori, Niphad, Ozar and Sinnar, he added.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated May 31, 2006)
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