Posts

Producers to Receive Crop Insurance Premium Benefit for Cover Crops

Agricultural producers who have coverage under most crop insurance policies are eligible for a premium benefit from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) if they planted cover crops during this crop year.
 
The Pandemic Cover Crop Program (PCCP), offered nationally by USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA), helps farmers maintain their cover crop systems, despite the financial challenges posed by the pandemic.The PCCP is part of USDA’s Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative, a bundle of programs to bring financial assistance to farmers, ranchers and producers who felt the impact of COVID-19 market disruptions.
 
“Cultivating cover crops requires a sustained, long-term investment, and the economic challenges of the pandemic made it financially challenging for many producers to maintain cover crop systems,” said RMA Acting Administrator Richard Flournoy. “Producers use cover crops to improve soil health and gain other agronomic benefits, and this program will reduce producers’ overall premium bill to help ensure producers can continue this climates-smart agricultural practice.”
 

Last Change for Crop Insurance

 
 
The final date to apply for crop insurance for spring crops, including dry beans, is March 15 for the 2021 crop year. Current policyholders who wish to make changes to their existing coverage also have until the March 15 sales closing date to do so.
 
Producers are encouraged to visit their crop insurance agent soon to learn specific details for the 2021 crop year. Agents can help producers determine what policy works best for their operation and review existing coverage to ensure the policy meets their needs.
 
A list of crop insurance agents is available online using the Risk Management Agent Locator. Producers can use the RMA Cost Estimatorto get a premium amount estimate of their insurance needs online.

Dry Bean Projected Prices Released for 2021 CY

USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) has approved the 2021 Crop Year (CY) projected prices for Yield Protection, Revenue Protection and Revenue Protection with Harvest Price Exclusion plans of insurance. The projected prices and volatility factors are applicable for the states, crops and types. Projected Prices and Volatility Factors apply to Supplemental Coverage Option (SCO) and Enhanced Coverage Option (ECO).
 
RMA is also providing additional projected prices for selected dry bean types where the Dry Bean Revenue Endorsement (DBRE) and Dry Pea Revenue Endorsement (DPRE) do not offer coverage for price movement. Per the Special Provisions, the additional projected price shall be the basis for the premium determination and settlement of claims.
 

New Crop Insurance Option for 2021

USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) recently released a new crop insurance option for dry edible beans, along with 30 other crops. The New Enhanced Coverage Option (ECO) provides additional area-based coverage for a portion of underlying crop insurance policy deductible.  A fact sheet on the ECO option is available here: Enhanced Coverage Option (ECO). An article with examples of how the coverage works from the University of Illinois is also available here: University of Illinois ECO Insurance Examples for Farmers.

RMA Extends Deadlines, Defers Interest Accrual Date

The USDA Risk Management Agency is allowing crop insurance providers to extend deadlines for premium and administration fee payments. This allows the providers to defer interest accrual for these payments.
 
“USDA recognizes farmers and ranchers have been severely affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic this year and to help ease the burden on these folks, we are continuing to extend flexibility for producers,” said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. “The flexibilities announced today support health and safety while also ensuring the Federal crop insurance program continues to serve as a vital risk management tool.”
 

USDA Improves Crop Insurance Policies with New Options

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced changes to several crop insurance policies improving options for producers, including introducing a new Quality Loss Option, a new unit structure assignment option for Enterprise Units (EU) and new procedures for Multi-County Enterprise Units (MCEU).
 
Specifically:
  • The new Quality Loss Option is in response to the 2018 Farm Bill that required the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) to research and develop methods of adjusting for quality losses. The new Quality Loss Option allows producers to replace post-quality production amounts in their Actual Production History (APH) databases with pre-quality production amounts, thereby increasing their actual yields for individual crop years.
  • For EUs and MCEUs, a new unit structure assignment option was added. Now, if the producer doesn’t qualify for separate EUs on both practices (EUs for both irrigated and non-irrigated practices, or EUs for both Following Another Crop (FAC) and Not Following Another Crop (NFAC) cropping practices, as authorized), an EU may apply to one practice meeting EU requirements and basic/optional units on the other practice.
 

Crop Insurance Flexibilities Added

USDA’s Risk Management Agency is authorizing self-certification on replant inspections and waiving witness signatures in certain situations as part of a broader suite of flexibilities to support producers during the coronavirus pandemic.
 
Specifically, Approved Insurance Providers may allow the use of self-certification replant inspections for certain crops with 100 gross acres (before considering share) per unit in lieu of 50 acres, and they may waive the witness signature requirement for approval of Assignment of Indemnity through July 15, 2020, for applicable crop years. Get the full details.

Crop Insurance Premiums Due Jan. 31

USDA’s Risk Management Agency is reminding farmers that crop insurance premiums are due January 31. Accrual of interest had been deferred for the 2019 crop year. If it’s not paid by then, the interest will attach on February 1, calculated from the date of the premium billing notice. The extended interest deferral built on other steps taken by USDA to support farmers and ranchers impacted by flooding and other disasters. As of January 13, RMA has paid roughly $8.1 billion in overall claims for the 2019 crop year.

Learn more.

RMA to Defer Interest on Crop Insurance Premiums

To help farmers hurt by the extreme weather, USDA’s Risk Management Agency will defer the accrual of interest on 2019 crop insurance premiums until the end of January. USDA Under Secretary Bill Northey made that announcement at the National Association of Farm Broadcasting convention. The Agriculture Department had previously announced a deferral until November 20 from the established September 30 deadline. Northey, who spent time last week in Minnesota and North Dakota, said the extension is needed due to the very delayed harvest.

Farmers with Harvest Delays Encouraged to Contact Insurance

Farmers with a Federal crop insurance policy can now request more time to harvest crops by filing a Notice of Loss with their Approved Insurance Provider. The end of the insurance period for spring-planted wheat and barley is October 31 and is December 10 for corn and soybeans. Once the loss notice is filed, insurance providers will then allow or deny additional harvest time on a case by case basis. USDA’s Risk Management Agency is encouraging farmers experiencing harvest delays to contact their insurance agent as soon as possible. Read the full press release.