The agricultural loss from the March flooding across Louisiana could top $15 million, according to an economist with the LSU AgCenter. Kurt Guidry said the figures are preliminary because reports are coming in daily from farmers and producers. Guidry said up to 40,000 acres of corn were covered by the high water. Farmers in north Louisiana, where the majority of the state's corn crop is grown, have a couple of weeks left in the optimum planting window, according to AgCenter recommendations.
The Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry will soon introduce “crop insurance” to protect farmers from risks linked to climate change such as drought, diseases and floods. “In its first phase, the crop insurance will cover only padi. Later, it will include other agriculture activities such as livestock, agro-food commodities such as fruits and vegetables as well as the fisheries sector,” said minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek.
A massive winter flood on the Mississippi River cracked open a levee near the Missouri-Illinois border and damaged thousands of acres of farmland. With the planting and flood seasons both right around the corner, farmers aren’t sure what to do next. Driving along rough and muddy gravel roads next to what was once a rich soybean field, farmer Adam Thomas gazes out on an upended mess of tubes, wheels and hoses from a nearby farmer’s irrigation system. Nowadays, his farmland in Miller City, Illinois, looks like a scene from “Lawrence of Arabia.”
Around a thousand farmers in Nueva Ecija, the Philippines, have been affected by an army worm attack on their onion farms that started in February. Farmers remove the worms by hand; the process is called “pangunguto” (lice picking), and is one of the steps recommended by government agriculturists. The infestation has almost doubled the cost of farm inputs this season. Under normal conditions, farmers spend from P80,000 to P100,000 worth of inputs for each hectare of onion farms.
The uptake of crop insurance is still low, a study has shown. The study by Tegemeo Institute attributed the low uptake to little payout compared to the actual losses suffered. A senior researcher at the institute, said the number of households buying insurance per year increased from 1.3 to 3.5 per cent in 2009 to about 34 per cent in 2012 but dropped to seven per cent in 2014. The study, which sought to assess the uptake of crop insurance among farmers, further showed that restriction on the type of crops and seed varieties a farmer could insure is a limitation.
U.S. farm groups are fighting mad about continued attacks on the federal crop insurance program. The American Soybean Association was not pleased to discover a US$18 billion cut to crop insurance contained in U.S. President Barack Obama’s 2017 budget proposal. Our policy has always been that we will strongly oppose any attempt to target farm bill programs for additional cuts, and it goes without saying that we will continue to fight proposed cuts to the farm safety net.
The banana fungal disease, panama disease, has been present in northern Mozambique for the past few years. There are now concerns among banana farmers in South Africa that should this soil-borne fungus spread there, it could put the whole banana industry at risk. Professor of the Department of Plant pathology of the University of Stellenbosch, Altus Viljoen is actively involved in the study of these kinds of diseases in bananas.
For the last two months, the Narendra Modi government seems to have gone into an overdrive to appease farmers. Several farmer rallies have been organised and the common theme has been the PM’s “dream” to double the incomes of farmers by 2022. According to the PM, agriculture has to stand on three pillars — paramparagat kheti (traditional agriculture), diversification into agro-forestry by planting trees on the boundaries of farmers’ fields, and encouraging livestock and bee-keeping, duly supported by food processing. These pillars will reduce the risks in farming, and augment farmers’ incomes.
The Akhil Bharatiya Kisan Sabha has pointed out gaps in the crop insurance scheme being promoted by the Haryana Government with pomp and show. To get claim loss on your insurance, the crop damage in a village should be more than 51 per cent. Otherwise, the relief cannot be claimed from a company, said sabha secretary of the state at a meeting here on Tuesday. The crop insurance scheme might not work well in Haryana, as farmers were not fully aware of it and they were already under debt.
The Odisha government’s failure to declare ‘Annewari’, scientific assessment of crop yields in affected areas, in time made the natural disasters-hit farmers’ loan repayment difficult, finds the Comptroller and Auditor General. According to CAG report on economic sector, which was tabled in the State Assembly recently, farmers were also deprived of timely compensation for crop loss as assessment of yield data was delayed by the government. Due to cyclone and unseasonal heavy rain in December 2010, the State government declared details of 18,882 villages in 24 districts where kharif 2010 crops were damaged after one year in March 2012.
With crops having affected by recent unseasonal rains and hailstorm in some parts of north India, the Centre's new crop insurance scheme has created a buzz among farmers attending the 'Krishi Unnati Mela' in the national capital but its details still elude them. Most farmers attending the three-day mela that ended today at Pusa campus wished to know more about the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) so that they can think of taking insurance cover for kharif crops to be sown from June.
Farmers in Kenya are set to benefit from the launch of a new innovative, index insurance scheme which utilises advanced technology and satellite data to assist agricultural workers in the face of flooding and drought conditions. Collaboration between public and private sector entities, with the assistance of the World Bank has resulted in the launch of an important Government-backed insurance scheme in Kenya, the Kenya National Agricultural Insurance Program and Kenya Livestock Insurance Program (KLIP), helping to protect the livelihoods of some of the region’s poorest against the negative impacts of natural disasters and severe weather.
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