From dawn until dusk, farmers work hard to build their business and create a sustainable, quality way of life for their families. It’s a commitment that needs to be protected from the challenges of life – from natural disasters and equipment failures to other unexpected crises that may arise. Choosing the right kind of insurance to protect your farm can be confusing but we’re here to help.
Here are 4 types of farm coverage that you should consider based on your own unique situation:
When Mother Nature Strikes, Be Prepared
It’s no secret that weather is one of the most unpredictable elements of farming. For 2021, Wisconsin farmers wait to see if the drought from 2020 plaguing much of the West will continue and stretch into the Midwest. When Mother Nature doesn’t go your way, it’s crucial to protect against losses due to natural causes such as excess rain, drought, lightning, windstorms and hail. Look for crop hail insurance and multi-peril policies that will cover losses due to a wide range of unexpected disasters.
Weather index insurance and area risk insurance plans are other tools that farmers can use to manage risk and prevent damage. Weather indexes pay out based on a predetermined index, such as rainfall, which is measured at a local weather station or by satellite, rather than based on a consequence of weather, such as a farmer’s crop yield. Because index insurance doesn’t necessarily require the services of claims adjustors, it allows for claims to be settled more quickly and more objectively. Area risk insurance plans are based on county-wide production and losses. These losses are paid out only if a county’s average yield or average revenue falls below a trigger yield or revenue.
With over 1 million cows on Wisconsin dairy farms contributing $45 million to the state’s economy annually, livestock is truly a “cash cow.” Protecting investments of livestock such as cattle and swine means mitigating risk against not only unexpected situations like fire and wind-related damage, but also the uncertainty of feed costs and fluctuating market prices. That’s why it’s important to consider livestock policies and risk management tools that cover a range of situations.
Farm Machinery & Equipment
It’s not your grandfather’s farm anymore – at least when it comes to the complex machinery and technology employed in recent years. From state-of-the-art automated milking parlors to ventilation systems and tractor GPS systems, farm equipment is a major investment that may result in expensive repairs when something goes wrong. Following key equipment safety guidelines can help prevent mishaps but breakdowns can still happen.
To ensure that the day-to-day farm operations continue without disruption, it’s crucial to research the right farm equipment breakdown coverage to determine exactly what’s needed based on the size of your property and the type of equipment. Keeping your inventory of farm equipment current and providing that to your agent Is also essential.
When researching the best policy for your farm insurance, it’s important to ask the right questions about coverage and protection limits. That’s especially true when it comes to specific farm products. Having crop insurance is key to protecting products such as seeds, grain and feed, but usually a commercial agribusiness policy is needed when your farm generates revenue through attractions like hayrides, corn mazes or petting zoos.
Hobby farms and specialized crops like industrialized hemp require customized farm or commercial coverage to protect every aspect of the business from harvesting and storage to transit and processing. Protection plans like Rural Mutual’s Dairy Revenue Protection program are specifically designed to protect products like milk production from unexpected declines in quarterly revenue.
As the #1 writer of farm insurance in Wisconsin, Rural Mutual Insurance understands farm insurance is not one-size-fits-all. Reach out to a trusted Rural Mutual agent to customize coverage that meets your needs.
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