22. 10. 12. - 15:02
Fruit farmers to get frost protection insurance
Austrian farmers are to get the chance to insure their fruit crops against late frost after an unexpected cold spell decimated this year's harvest.
Up until now it has not been possible for an insurance against frost to be provided but that will now change after the new policy was unveiled.
In Styria the frost was blamed from a reduction in the apple harvest of 25 percent, plums of 50 per cent and cherries of 75 per cent with an 80 per cent reduction for apricots.
Most fruit harvests are insured against hail damage, but not frost for which only strawberries could be insured up until now.
Now the insurance company the österreichischen Hagelversicherung has announced a plan to change that.
In a statement the company said: "At the request of our farming clients we are now working on developing an appropriate policy for frost damage protection."
The cost of the policy has not been fixed but it is being worked out together with the chamber of agriculture and should be finalised before winter ends.