One of the key questions we encounter in our business is â€œIf something happens to my cow, will I really get a payout?â€�
Henry Ochula, a farmer from Lukhuna location, Bungoma county had these same questions when he insured his cow. Henry took an insurance cover for his young heifer in October 2016 through Naitiri Dairy Farmers Association, where he is a member. In Mid November, Henryâ€™s cow was sick for three days. Before a vet could get to it, it unfortunately died.
Henry immediately called ACRE Africa staff as he had been instructed. Our field officer called one of the certified veterinary doctor and dispatched him to examine the animal. ACRE Africa only works with veterinary doctors registered under the Kenya Veterinary Board, the international body that regulates veterinary surgeons and veterinary para-professionals. In the meantime, the field officer facilitated for Henry to get a claim form. As soon as the veterinary doctor released the post mortem report, and Henry completed the claim form, ACRE Africa followed up with the insurance company to process the payout. Within two weeks, the cheque was sent to Naitiri Dairy, which then transferred the money to Henry.
â€œOne of the things I was happy about was that I did not have to follow up with the insurance company to ensure I was paid. ACRE Africa did everything. All I had to do was complete the claim form,â€� he says.
With the payout amounting to KES 27,000 (USD 270), Henry topped up and bought a higher breed heifer and immediately took a cover for it.
ACRE Africa has been training Naitiri Dairy on good farming practices from July 2016 before signing them up for livestock insurance in August 2016. Our insurance cover includes training on routine animal health practices and vaccines to reduce mortality rates and improve dairy cow health. At ACRE Africa, we are keen not only to protect farmersâ€™ investments through insurance; but to also ensure farmers understand how to take care of their livestock. The purpose of insurance is not a substitute for good animal practices, but rather a shield against unforeseen risks.
â€œWithout the insurance, I would not have been able to replace my heifer, which would have set me back financially. I encourage my fellow farmers to do smart farming by taking insurance for their animals,â€� Henry says.