Blue Marble and USAID enhance climate resilience for Kenyan coffee farmers

Blue Marble, a climate insurer, has partnered with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to introduce an innovative financial solution in Kenya, aimed at enhancing the climate resilience of coffee farmers connected to global supply chains.

Supported by a grant from USAID’s Climate Finance for Development Accelerator (CFDA) Adaptation Finance Window, this initiative aligns with the President’s Emergency Plan for Adaptation and Resilience (PREPARE). The Adaptation Finance Window utilises grant funding to mitigate risks associated with private sector-driven climate adaptation methods in emerging and frontier markets.

In Kenya, approximately 560,000 smallholder coffee farmers lack insurance coverage against climate change impacts, leading to significant income and crop losses that hinder necessary financing and investment.

To tackle this challenge, the program will collaborate with local financial service providers to offer credit and insurance services, including an innovative revenue insurance product designed to safeguard farmers’ incomes.

Blue Marble’s project will cover coffee-growing regions nationwide, protecting against climate-related risks such as droughts, floods, and price fluctuations. Farmers will receive automatic payouts when predetermined parameters are met following a climate-related event.

The program aims to extend its reach to 50,000 farmers in Kenya by 2025.

Jaime de Piniés, CEO of Blue Marble, emphasises the importance of climate adaptation in protecting the livelihoods of farmers worldwide, who are essential to global food supply chains. He underscores the economic necessity of enhancing their resilience in an interconnected world.

Piniés adds, “We are proud to launch this program in collaboration with USAID to showcase how public-private partnerships can create an innovative and cost-effective safety net for coffee farmers and their families. We hope that this program will serve as a model for other regions and supply-chains around the world.”

Gillian Caldwell, USAID’s Chief Climate Officer, explains, “An unexpected climate event can be devastating to farmers and may even lead to bankruptcy. Blue Marble’s model demonstrates how coffee farmers can be protected using innovative insurance products, which serve as a catalyst for more public and private investment building resilience among local communities,”

By providing financial stability to smallholder farmers, the program benefits not only them and their families but also customers and the wider community. With the security it offers, farmers can plan for the long term, invest in sustainable practices, and break free from cycles of poverty and debt. This stability not only improves farmers’ lives but also enhances the resilience of the coffee supply chain for buyers.

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