IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Uptake of Crop Insurance among Smallholder Farmers: Insights from Maize Producers in Kenya


  • Njue, E.
  • Kirimi, L.
  • Mathenge, M.


In spite of agriculture being an important source of income growth and a potential source of investment opportunities in Kenya, farmers face numerous production risks including climate change and variability. While literature suggests that crop insurance has the potential to unlock key services that enhance farm productivity, crop insurance uptake evidence is limited, hence, this study sought to inform on ways of making crop insurance work for the smallholder producers. Data was collected from 400 maize-producing households in areas where weather index-based insurance had been promoted. Results show that uptake of crop insurance is very low and declining and, the insurance concept is also not well understood by farmers. In addition, basis risk hinders uptake of crop insurance since farmers exhibited high levels of dissatisfaction with claim payments. Furthermore, awareness and training on crop insurance, density of automated weather stations and ownership of savings account are integral factors in enhancing its uptake. Our findings therefore highlight the need to educate farmers on the principles of crop insurance and different products that exist. Similarly, designing of crop insurance products and selection of target crop enterprises should involve all stakeholders to enhance uptake. Acknowledgement :

Suggested Citation

  • Njue, E. & Kirimi, L. & Mathenge, M., 2018. "Uptake of Crop Insurance among Smallholder Farmers: Insights from Maize Producers in Kenya," 2018 Conference, July 28-August 2, 2018, Vancouver, British Columbia 277023, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:iaae18:277023
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.277023

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL:
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kassie, Girma Tesfahun & Erenstein, Olaf & Mwangi, Wilfred & La Rovere, Roberto & Setimela, Peter S. & Langyintuo, Augustine S., 2012. "Characterization of Maize Production in Southern Africa: Synthesis of CIMMYT/DTMA Household Level Farming System Surveys in Angola, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe," Socioeconomics Program Working Papers 147108, CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center.
    2. Michael R. CARTER & Alain de JANVRY & Elisabeth SADOULET & Alexandros SARRIS, 2014. "Index-based weather insurance for developing countries: A review of evidence and a set of propositions for up-scaling," Working Papers P111, FERDI.
    3. Dean Karlan & Robert Osei & Isaac Osei-Akoto & Christopher Udry, 2014. "Agricultural Decisions after Relaxing Credit and Risk Constraints," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 129(2), pages 597-652.
    4. Robert Aidoo & James Osei Mensah & Prosper Wie & Dadson Awunyo-vitor, 2014. "Prospects of Crop Insurance as a Risk Management Tool among Arable Crop Farmers in Ghana," Asian Economic and Financial Review, Asian Economic and Social Society, vol. 4(3), pages 341-354, March.
    5. Nathaniel D. Jensen & Christopher B. Barrett & Andrew G. Mude, 2016. "Index Insurance Quality and Basis Risk: Evidence from Northern Kenya," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1450-1469.
    6. Dercon, Stefan & Hill, Ruth Vargas & Clarke, Daniel & Outes-Leon, Ingo & Seyoum Taffesse, Alemayehu, 2014. "Offering rainfall insurance to informal insurance groups: Evidence from a field experiment in Ethiopia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 132-143.
    7. Heckman, James J, 1978. "Dummy Endogenous Variables in a Simultaneous Equation System," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(4), pages 931-959, July.
    8. Dil Bahadur Rahut & Maja Micevska Scharf, 2012. "Livelihood diversification strategies in the Himalayas," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 56(4), pages 558-582, October.
    9. Marc Ground & Steven F Koch, 2008. "Hurdle Models Of Alcohol And Tobacco Expenditure In South African Households1," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 76(1), pages 132-143, March.
    10. Hans P. Binswanger-Mkhize, 2012. "Is There Too Much Hype about Index-based Agricultural Insurance?," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 48(2), pages 187-200, February.
    11. Falola, Abraham & Ayinde, Opeyemi Eyitayo & Agboola, Babatola Olasunkanmi, 2013. "Willingness To Take Agricultural Insurance By Cocoa Farmers In Nigeria," International Journal of Food and Agricultural Economics (IJFAEC), Alanya Alaaddin Keykubat University, Department of Economics and Finance, vol. 1(1), pages 1-12, July.
    12. Marc Ground & Steven F. Koch, 2007. "Hurdle Models of Alcohol and Tobacco Expenditure in South African Households," Working Papers 200703, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Jensen, Nathaniel D. & Mude, Andrew G. & Barrett, Christopher B., 2018. "How basis risk and spatiotemporal adverse selection influence demand for index insurance: Evidence from northern Kenya," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 172-198.
    2. Negi, Digvijay S., 2018. "Tail-dependent Rainfall Risk and Demand for Index based Crop Insurance," 2018 Annual Meeting, August 5-7, Washington, D.C. 274481, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    3. John, Felix & Toth, Russell & Frank, Karin & Groeneveld, Jürgen & Müller, Birgit, 2019. "Ecological Vulnerability Through Insurance? Potential Unintended Consequences of Livestock Drought Insurance," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 157(C), pages 357-368.
    4. Xiao Lin & W. Jean Kwon, 2020. "Application of parametric insurance in principle‐compliant and innovative ways," Risk Management and Insurance Review, American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 23(2), pages 121-150, June.
    5. Van Campenhout, Bjorn, 2016. "Risk and Sustainable Crop Intensification," 2016 Fifth International Conference, September 23-26, 2016, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 246917, African Association of Agricultural Economists (AAAE).
    6. Kaelab K. Haile & Eleonora Nillesen & Nyasha Tirivayi, 2019. "Impact of Formal Climate Risk Transfer Mechanisms on Risk-Aversion: Empirical Evidence from Rural Ethiopia," CESifo Working Paper Series 7717, CESifo.
    7. Haile, Kaleab K. & Nillesen, Eleonora & Tirivayi, Nyasha, 2020. "Impact of formal climate risk transfer mechanisms on risk-aversion: Empirical evidence from rural Ethiopia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 130(C).
    8. Kathryn Vasilaky & Sofía Martínez Sáenz & Radost Stanimirova & Daniel Osgood, 2020. "Perceptions of Farm Size Heterogeneity and Demand for Group Index Insurance," Games, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 11(1), pages 1-21, March.
    9. Kenneth W. Sibiko & Matin Qaim, 2020. "Weather index insurance, agricultural input use, and crop productivity in Kenya," Food Security: The Science, Sociology and Economics of Food Production and Access to Food, Springer;The International Society for Plant Pathology, vol. 12(1), pages 151-167, February.
    10. Ceballos, Francisco & Robles, Miguel, 2020. "Demand heterogeneity for index-based insurance: The case for flexible products," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 146(C).
    11. Daniel J. Clarke, 2016. "A Theory of Rational Demand for Index Insurance," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 8(1), pages 283-306, February.
    12. Ana Maria Loboguerrero & Bruce M. Campbell & Peter J. M. Cooper & James W. Hansen & Todd Rosenstock & Eva Wollenberg, 2019. "Food and Earth Systems: Priorities for Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation for Agriculture and Food Systems," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 11(5), pages 1-26, March.
    13. Matthieu Stigler & David Lobell, 2020. "On the benefits of index insurance in US agriculture: a large-scale analysis using satellite data," Papers 2011.12544,
    14. Glenn W. Harrison & Jia Min Ng, 2019. "Behavioral insurance and economic theory: A literature review," Risk Management and Insurance Review, American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 22(2), pages 133-182, July.
    15. Gunnsteinsson, Snaebjorn, 2020. "Experimental identification of asymmetric information: Evidence on crop insurance in the Philippines," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 144(C).
    16. Million Tadesse & Bekele Shiferaw & Olaf Erenstein, 2015. "Weather index insurance for managing drought risk in smallholder agriculture: lessons and policy implications for sub-Saharan Africa," Agricultural and Food Economics, Springer;Italian Society of Agricultural Economics (SIDEA), vol. 3(1), pages 1-21, December.
    17. Ward, Patrick S. & Kumar, Neha & De Nicola, Francesca & Hill, Ruth & Makhija, Simrin & Spielman, David J. & Magnan, Nicholas, 2017. "Insuring Against Drought: Evidence on Agricultural Intensification and Demand for Index Insurance from a Randomized Evaluation in Rural Bangladesh," 2017 Annual Meeting, July 30-August 1, Chicago, Illinois 258090, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    18. Sibiko, Kenneth W. & Qaim, Matin, 2017. "Weather Index Insurance, Agricultural Input Use, and Crop Productivity in Kenya," GlobalFood Discussion Papers 256214, Georg-August-Universitaet Goettingen, GlobalFood, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development.
    19. Temesgen Belissa & Robert Lensink & Anne Winkel, 2020. "Effects of Index Insurance on Demand and Supply of Credit: Evidence from Ethiopia," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 102(5), pages 1511-1531, October.
    20. Hill, Ruth Vargas & Kumar, Neha & Magnan, Nicholas & Makhija, Simrin & de Nicola, Francesca & Spielman, David J. & Ward, Patrick S., 2019. "Ex ante and ex post effects of hybrid index insurance in Bangladesh," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 136(C), pages 1-17.

    More about this item


    Risk and Uncertainty;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ags:iaae18:277023. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: AgEcon Search (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.