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An economic evaluation of area yield insurance for small-scale cane growers


  • Theresa Clover
  • Wilhelm Nieuwoudt


In the past, crop insurance schemes have based indemnity payments on individual producers' yields. Insurance of individual yields does not cope efficiently with systemic risk and therefore fails in areas where crop yields are correlated across space. Area yield insurance provides an alternative and eliminates the problems of moral hazard and adverse selection associated with individual yield insurance. Area yield insurance therefore effectively copes with systemic risk. In this study, principles of area yield insurance were applied to yield data on small-scale cane growers in KwaZulu-Natal and used to calculate pure premium rates. The viability of a government-subsidised area yield insurance scheme for small-scale cane farmers was assessed in terms of affordability to the government, the farmers and private insurance companies. The empirical results obtained from this study indicate that such a scheme may pose great expense to the government and, as a result, may not be viable in South Africa. This topic needs further study, while other risk management strategies should also be considered.

Suggested Citation

  • Theresa Clover & Wilhelm Nieuwoudt, 2003. "An economic evaluation of area yield insurance for small-scale cane growers," Development Southern Africa, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(2), pages 293-305.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:deveza:v:20:y:2003:i:2:p:293-305
    DOI: 10.1080/03768350302952

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