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I have been farming corn and soybeans for about three decades and I have always purchased crop insurance because it gives me some peace of mind even though we are in a climate setting that typically doesn’t experience wide weather extremes like some of our neighbors in other parts of the country.
The evolution to crop insurance has effectively moved risk management away from the public sector, funded exclusively by taxpayer dollars, and toward the private sector, where farmers and crop insurance companies help shoulder part of the cost of natural disasters.
Without effective and affordable crop insurance, catastrophic production losses would sap the rural economy by setting in motion a series of harmful events: farm failures and consolidation, job losses, financial stress on rural banks and reduced investment in U.S. agriculture. …
Without a doubt, the volatility of weather and commodity markets necessitates government assistance with crop insurance premiums so that our nation’s farmers have access to affordable and dependable crop insurance products.
Since the passage of the 2014 Farm Bill, crop insurance is the best tool farmers have to manage risks and revenue. It’s not cheap, but it is something that we budget for annually and can’t imagine not having.
Most years, my crops succeed and no insurance check is collected, meaning insurance companies and the government keep my premiums to offset other policy costs. In disaster years when we suffer from drought, frost, flood, hail or a host of other calamities, insurance only kicks in after I’ve shouldered a sizable deductible, meaning I share the cost of aid.
Specifically, there have been discussions about cutting the premium support that farmers receive for purchasing crop insurance. This does a disservice to everyone. If such proposals succeed, it would only serve to increase the costs to farmers and undermine their ability to manage risk….
Mother Nature is the toughest, most unpredictable boss. Farmers are resilient and they adapt, but a safety net is crucial to their survival. And, it’s not a safety net if it’s not affordable.
We had a chance to change crop insurance during the farm bill debate. And we did change it. For the better. Now, let’s give crop insurance a chance to work.
Some think that crop insurance is a freebie. Let me set the record straight right now: It’s not. Farmers have skin in the game when they pay their premiums, which is not pocket change.