Groupama optimistic about crop insurance reform

After a joint committee between senators and lawmakers criticized a more “muscular” version of crop insurance reform, Grupama is optimistic that the latter will allow farmers to increase their crop insurance coverage. It states that there is. But maintenance, or even increased premiums, will have to be compensated for by other compelling discussions with producers who are currently doing without them. Otherwise, the goal of covering 60% of the cultivable crop area by 2030 will not be achieved.

“Historical reforms designed for farmers, putting insurance companies in the logic of public-private partnerships, and based on the principles of solidarity and universality”: This was done by a representative of Gulpama at a press conference on Thursday, February 17th. It was explained.Project Climate multi-risk insurance reform.. The project that Senator carried out on Wednesday, February 8, was slightly “muscular” compared to the version validated by Senator.

The day after a joint committee of lawmakers and senators confirmed the revised version, Groupama-FDJ representatives were optimistic about the effects of this reform to save the system.

Because it’s okay Save crop insurance equipment : Since its founding in 2005 Percentage of areas covered with cultivable crops It did not exceed 30%. According to insurance companies, that’s not enough to be economically sustainable.Proliferation Climate danger According to them, over the last five years, “systems have become unacceptable to insurers.” Due to fluctuations in 2016, the loss / premium ratio went into the red and has not returned to green since then.

According to Groupama, the current harvest insurance system cannot be maintained.
According to Groupama, the current harvest insurance system cannot be maintained. (© Groupama)

Only insurer costs more than 200 million euros GroupamaAn exceptional episode of Frost last April, after a similarly rare and gentle spell a month ago, was the “trigger factor” for reform. Throughout France, “more than 80% of viticulture members have declared claims equivalent to 105,000 hectares of viticulture. Damaged agricultural area.. Also, nearly 20,000 hectares of beet crops use a “re-seeding” guarantee, explains François Schmitt, Farmer and President of Groupama Grand Est.

2021 triggered the reform of the multi-risk climate system, with the exceptional frost in April.
2021 triggered the reform of the multi-risk climate system, with the exceptional frost in April. (© Groupama)

“Lower premiums than not on the agenda”

But reform is not synonymous with lowering premiums, it’s the exact opposite. In the context of a “loss-making” system, an increase in contingencies, and thus potentially an increase in compensation, leads to an increase in premiums. Pacifica and Groupama had already announced in November 2022 last year. “Given the evolution of climate change, reducing premiums is probably not on the agenda,” confirms Pascal Vine, director of Groupama-FDJ. Insurance companies will have to find other arguments, especially for all farmers who do not have crop insurance because of their costs.

“There has been a strong culture of state intervention so far,” especially on the most exceptional dangers. The state only intervenes in the third final level of the system, “recalls François Schmitt. “And if state intervention diminishes with uninsured, this will mechanically increase the number of subscribers »».

And, like the government, major agricultural insurance companies expect the education they need to carry out with young people. “It requires true educational efforts. Choosing to insure against the consequences of danger to your crops will determine to treat your plot once or twice against the disease. Must be. »»

These arguments must be strong enough to convince young farmers to take out long-term insurance, and therefore need to achieve the purpose of the coverage of the system currently being added to the reform text. Frédéric Descrozaille covers 60% of the surface area of ​​vineyards and vineyards (compared to 30% in 2020), 30% of fruit trees (compared to just over 4% in 2020) and 30% of pastures.

The purpose of crop insurance reform is to at least double the coverage of cultivable crops and vines.
The purpose of crop insurance reform is to at least double the coverage of cultivable crops and vines. (© Groupama)