Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Crop Insurance

Nez Perce FB Sponsors Crop Insurance Breakfast Meeting in Lewiston
By Bob Smathers

Lewiston--Rick Williams from RMA spoke on Federal Crop Insurance programs in early September at the Brammer Building in downtown Lewiston. The topics discussed ranged from CRC (Crop Revenue) coverage to CAT (catastrophic) coverage. Rick also discussed falling numbers and how it relates to insurance and how the CRC base price is determined.

Rick Williams indicated that quality adjustments are a problem on CRC. He said that that falling number discounts should be factored into CRC coverage because falling numbers below 200 are not eligible for Federal crop loans through FSA. “Federal crop knows what they need to do with regard to falling numbers, we just don’t know how to get there.” Falling numbers was instituted as an alternative to visual inspection for sprout damage.

Mr. Williams also discussed CAT coverage which is a minimal insurance policy covering only 50 percent of APH. “There is no premium, but it isn’t for everyone.” CAT insurance doesn’t cover winter damage.

“In 2009, CRC was a great opportunity for growers, because the base price was high $8.98 per bushel” says Williams. The premium to purchase CRC in 2009 was much higher because of the high base price, but it was still a great deal. The $8.98 CRC base price was set last September and was based on the high market in 2008. Rick Williams indicated that the base CRC price would be in the $5.66 range for crop year 2010, but that the exact price wouldn’t be known until the final 10 trading days were up later in September.

Mr. Williams indicated that Growers should evaluate all crop insurance products (APH, CRC, RA, IP) when they are talking to their agents about crop insurance coverage. Also, a new “Combo Product” will be available in the future and this product takes the best of APH, CRC, RA, and IP and combines them into one product.

Several recommendations were given to growers at the meeting by Rick Williams. “In the event of claims, keep production records separate for all optional units on the farm and have all documents including settlement sheets available, otherwise claims could be delayed.”
This breakfast meeting was attended by about 20 people.

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