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Veteran Advisor

Do We Need Crop Insurance?

Craig HIll, president of the Iowa Farm Bureau, writes in the Des Moines Register that crop insurance is more important than ever during this period of low grain prices.  His article is long words and short on numbers.


What do you think?  Can American agriculture survive without crop insurance?  Can the family farm (whatever that is) survive without crop insurance?  Can you survive without crop insurance?


I haven't used government crop insurance for a number of years and doubt if I will use it unless I'm forced to.  I suppose I could use some hail insurance but haven't recently.


Does crop insurance allow you to make plans or commitments that would not be viable without it?  


Some farmers look at corp insurance as a profit center.  Some feel cheated if they don't get a payment, but they don't tell if the payment is greater than the premium or not.


Is corp insurance like health insurance where if you are in good ground and good weather you are paying for those who take bigh risks and probably shouldn't even be planting that corp?

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3 Replies
Honored Advisor

Re: Do We Need Crop Insurance?

I haven`t gotten my premiums back yet in crop insurance, but like if you drop a quarter in the toilet it`s not worth sticking your hand in a digging it out so you throw another half dollar in so it makes it worth I`ll continue tossing and digging  into the future hoping one day I`ll hit the jackpot  Smiley Happy  But I do know this, whenever I`ve had a crop insurance claim, it was a very lean year that next year, so that small check might`ve deadened the pain a little.


I would not forward contract without insurance backing that future sale up, it`s nerve wracking enough worrying than a combine bearing would start a fire and burn the corn crop up and the standard policy would say "That wasn`t a natural disaster you shoulda bought the fire insurance add on".


Subsidizing the crop insurance is good money spent for the government`s cheap food policy, it makes sure that every arable acre of farmland is planted to the fullest of it`s production capability.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Do We Need Crop Insurance?

UP 'Here' in the fringe [North Cent. Wi.] in my small operation.......crop insurance is a necessary expense. I will not plant without it !  Just too many weather related events that can wipe out or really cut yields.  I do NOT farm for crop insurance but has helped my operation live for another year a number of times.



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Honored Advisor

Re: Do We Need Crop Insurance?

BA I have thought about your entry for 48 seconds now and it won't help to spend more time on it...


I have hears proponents --crop insurance sales people who seem to get rich on the stuff --- make that statement


"I would not forward contract without insurance backing that future sale up"


It never makes sense to me..... I have never been paid in grain from Crop insurance and a forward contract for sale of grain is a contract to deliver grain not money.  Not only does the forward sale need grain delivery, it determines point of delivery...  If there is one insurance claim in that location there will be others.

One does not protect the other...


I get even more nervous with crop insurance because when you need to buy the grain to deliver all the grain is in the hands of folks who want mark-up in price.

There is nothing that says you are allowed to pay off in cash.  And by their kindness occasionally you can pay off the offsetting futures position but it is seldom written in the contracts I get.

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