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Farmers’ Mutual Group Launches Foot & Mouth Cover

Farmers' Mutual, New Zealand's leading rural financial services organisation, has launched a Foot and Mouth insurance cover that will provide prompt financial assistance following a Foot and Mouth outbreak in New Zealand.

The new Foot and Mouth Cover provides financial assistance of up to $250,000 if a Government order for destruction of stock on a specified property is made following a Foot and Mouth outbreak. It covers significant costs on a specified property, that may not be met by statutory compensation under the Biosecurity Act 1993.

“New Zealand farmers face a very real threat of losing all their livestock if this country was to experience an outbreak of Foot and Mouth disease, said Farmers’ Mutual Senior Product Manager Graeme Smith.

In a recent public awareness campaign, the Government made it clear that the threat of Foot and Mouth to this country must be taken seriously. While images of the recent UK crisis were disturbing, the Government has warned New Zealanders that the main threat of the disease comes from Asia, not Europe. Furthermore, the European outbreak was temporary; the threat from Asia is not, Mr Smith said.

“Following the UK crisis, Farmers’ Mutual Group has received a number of calls from clients concerned about the financial risks they would face if an outbreak occurred here. Although the Biosecurity Act 1993 does offer financial protection to those farmers affected by an outbreak, Farmers' Mutual believes that there could be significant costs that may not be met by Government compensation.

“These costs could include the cost of lodging a claim, locating, inspecting and transporting replacement stock, and the cost of taking any independent steps over and above those provided by statutory compensation,” Mr Smith said.

“Farmers could also be affected by delays between destruction of property and the payment of compensation, which requires verification of the amount of loss.”

Farmers' Mutual Group will pay a pre-selected amount to any insured person following the slaughter of the insured’s herd by order of the Government due to a confirmed outbreak of Foot and Mouth.

“There is no requirement to quantify the financial loss before payment is made. We recognise that it is the Government’s function under the Act to compensate for verifiable losses caused by the exercise of statutory powers. We see our role as providing cover for the less tangible hardships our clients may suffer following an order for destruction of their stock.

“Any outbreak of Foot and Mouth disease would be an unprecedented shock to the New Zealand economy, far beyond the realm of any previous experience and by far the worst affected would be our country’s farmers.

“Rather than offering a more expensive form of cover, which assesses premium based on stock numbers, Farmers’ Mutual has chosen to offer a sum insured option which allows us to offer our clients immediate financial support in what would undoubtedly be a most stressful time.”

Foot and Mouth Cover offers:

„X A sum insured, between $50,000 to $250,000

„X Immediate financial support on a specified property in the event of an outbreak and compulsory slaughtering

„X A cover option assessed in terms of specific requirements that do not need to be adjusted to account for seasonal changes in stock flow, or falls in stock market value.

Foot and Mouth Cover options available

Sum Insured Annual Premium (excluding G.S.T)

$ 50,000 $1,200

$100,000 $2,300

$150,000 $3,300

$200,000 $4,300

$250,000 $5,300

Once there has been a declared outbreak of Foot and Mouth in New Zealand the ability to purchase Farmers’ Mutual Foot and Mouth Cover will no longer be available.

ENDS

For further information, please contact:

Graeme Smith

Senior Product Manager

Farmers’ Mutual Group

Phone: 06 351 8861

Mobile: 025 409 723

Email: graeme.smith@FMG.co.nz

Farmers’ Mutual Group

Farmers’ Mutual Group is New Zealand’s leading rural financial services organisation.

Established in 1905 as a rural insurer, it has grown into a financial services group adding finance and investment to its portfolio of services but has remained focused on serving the needs of rural communities.


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