Zimbabwe: Farmers Can Still Insure Against Hailstorm, Says RTA

TOBACCO farmers who want to take out insurance cover against hail damage to their crops can still do so.

The Rhodesia Tobacco Association’s hail insurance scheme is in no way affected by the decision to cancel registration Lloyd’s of London.

This point was emphasised by an RTA official in an interview yesterday to remove the impression some growers may have gained that tobacco is no longer accepted. To date more than 2 000 tobacco growers have taken out insurance this season.

He said the existing contract between the RTA and Lloyd’s was not affected by the Government’s decision and it did not expire until the end of the present growing season.

He expressed confidence that “if things do not return to normal soon, the hail insurance scheme can be continued without difficulty”.

He added: “The RTA has been underwritten by the Lloyd’s of London since 1938 and I have nothing but praise for the complete understanding which Lloyd’s has always given to RTA.”

LESSONS FOR TODAY

Tobacco insurance is key in supporting the agricultural sector.

Unlike most crops, tobacco is harvested as leaves thus the vagaries of weather like hailstorm cause a great loss to tobacco products.

A week ago a hailstorm destroyed 25 hectares of tobacco in Morondera. In 2018, some small-scale tobacco farmers in Zvimba were left counting their losses after heavy rains extensively destroyed their crop. In most cases the crop will not have been insured, and the farmer loses out.

It’s a wakeup call for all tobacco farmers and every other farmer to ensure that their crop is well insured.

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