Greetings from Tamale, Ghana! At the time of our last update, the Examining Underinvestment in Agriculture (EUI) project had finished marketing rainfall-indexed insurance to smallholder farmers in northern Ghana, and had measured high demand for the product. The EUI project is currently preparing for the next year of the project, with a full set of activities which include: conducting an insurance product satisfaction survey; preparing to conduct a comprehensive household survey of all respondents; making plans to again market a commercial index insurance product to farmers; and wrapping up a pilot study on fertilizer technology.
The project is currently conducting a short survey with those farmers who purchased the Sanzali insurance product this year in order to measure rainfall perception, product knowledge and product satisfaction. Results of the survey will inform the Ghana Agricultural Insurance Programme and Ghana Insurers Association as they develop a commercial index product to market ahead of next year’s agricultural season. Following the product satisfaction survey, the project will conduct a comprehensive, four-hour household survey with all respondents to measure the effects of insurance on areas ranging from agricultural input use and yields to household financial flows and consumption. This is very exciting, as it means that many more people may be able to access rainfall insurance in years to come.
The project is also completing activities related to a small pilot study on fertilizer technology conducted with fifteen smallholder farmers living within the EUI project area. Farmers were provided with commercial organic and inorganic fertilizers and an open-pollinated maize seed variety, as well as provided with extension advice about recommended input packages. Results from the fertilizer technology pilot will help to inform decisions about testing combinations of rainfall-indexed insurance with agricultural technology packages in the future.
As usual, we thank our donors for making such remarkable progress possible. And we wish you all a very wonderful 2012 as we, too, prepare for the new year.