Crop Insurance Available

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Farmers and ranchers who sell their produce at curbside and farmers markets can more easily obtain crop insurance or file a claim with recent changes to the Federal Crop Insurance Program’s Common Crop Insurance Policy.

The Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC), which is the federal agency that oversees the program, added a new section called Direct Marketing and Verifiable Records to the process to guide those who want to sell directly any part of their crops.

According to Micah Brown, a staff attorney at the National Agricultural Law Center, increasing the flexibility to obtain crop insurance and set the standard is the goal of the changes.

“Not all manufacturers have third-party credentials to provide to verify their products,” Brown said. “For example, some farmers sell their insurance products directly to consumers through the farm or roadside, farmers’ markets, or agritourism businesses.”

FCIC requires farmers and ranchers to submit certain documents to obtain FCIP crop insurance. The new rules allow producers to file their production documents outside of a “disinterested person,” which is someone who is not related or involved in the business, Brown said. In the past farmers were required to submit their crop records from third parties or a pre-harvest inspection by their authorized insurance company to ensure that the crop is viable.

Another change to the policy requires farmers to appeal the opposition to “good agriculture” within 30 days from the notice of disagreement. In order for producers to receive insurance payments under their policy, they must follow the USDA’s guidelines for “good agricultural practices.” Brown noted that farmers often produce better crops when they follow practices known to grow their own insured crops.

“Sometimes, a producer’s insurance provider will deny their claim because of their policy because the insurance claims that good agricultural practices were not followed,” Brown said. “Under the new policy, producers have 30 days to appeal the insurance decision to the FCIC for consideration.”

The policy change also applies to most crop insurance policies with a change date of June 30, 2022 or later. FCIC will continue to consider public comments until Aug. 29, 2022.

Producers still need to support their crop insurance with “certified records” such as certified scale weight records, pick records, harvesters and daily sales records. “Manufacturing records” in the revised schedule are defined as “written records [a producer’s] actual production described on the production report.”

FCIC uses these seed production documents to verify the producer’s insurance coverage.

Brown said the new rules expand the types of legal documents that direct marketers can provide insurance, report their annual income, and file a claim under their policy.

Direct Marketing with more Verifiable Records

The new section on Direct Marketing and Verifiable Records requires producers to notify the FCIC and complete a marketing license if they intend to sell any part of their crops or do not have valid records when required under the policy. Growers must complete these two requirements by the date of their harvest report. If a farmer changes his marketing plan, he must notify FCIC no later than 15 days before harvest.

The new section also provides flexibility for production reports. Let’s say a farmer has trouble filing the required reports made under the Federal Crop Insurance Program because of the nature of their farming operation. In such cases, the Common Crop Insurance Policy allows growers to request pre-harvest testing.

“Although a pre-harvest assessment will not be used to calculate fines if the assessment is conducted prior to filing a loss claim, the report obtained from such an assessment will support the producer’s record of participation in the Federal Crop Insurance Program. ,” Brown explained.

If timely notification is not provided to FCIC for changes, marketing certificates, and production approval documents, they will receive a yield that is 75 percent or less of the yield that FCIC used to determine how the farmer planted the previous year.

The National Agricultural Law Center is located in Fayetteville, Arkansas, but serves the nation’s agriculture industry and is a major partner of the US Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Library.

For more information on Division of Agriculture research, visit the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station website: Follow us on Twitter at @ArkAgResearch.

For more information about the Division of Agriculture, visit Follow us on Twitter at @AgInArk.

About the Agriculture Sector

The mission of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting reliable research and pursuing best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the field of national history education.

The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 departments within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and teachers at five schools.

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, personality, sexuality, national origin, religion, age, disability, family or veteran status, genetic information, or other location. any protected by law, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.