Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Crop Insurance Update: Whole-Farm Revenue Insurance Revised to Allow Greater Access

Written by M. Sean High

On August 27, 2015, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced changes to the Whole-Farm Revenue Protection insurance program.  These program revisions are designed to allow “beginning, organic, and fruit and vegetable growers’ better access [to] Whole-Farm Revenue Protection.”

The purpose of Whole-Farm Revenue Protection is to provide farmers and ranchers the ability “to insure all of the commodities on their farm at once instead of one commodity at a time.”  As a result of this program, many producers are now provided “access to a risk management safety net…that gives them the option of embracing more crop diversity on their farm.”

According to USDA, beginning farmers and ranchers are now granted increased access to Whole-Farm Revenue Protection through a reduction in the required records from five to three historical years.  Furthermore, a beginning farmer or rancher assuming at least 90 percent of a farm operation may now qualify for the Whole-Farm Revenue Protection program “by using the former farmer operator’s federal farm tax records.”

Additionally, USDA is attempting to provide Whole-Farm Revenue Protection to larger numbers of livestock producers by “remov[ing] the previous cap that limited participants to those who received 35 percent or less of their income from livestock production.” 

Finally, USDA is striving to provide greater program availability to expanding operations through an increase in “the cap on historical revenue for expanding operations to 35 percent from its previous 10 percent.”

More information regarding Whole-Farm Revenue can be found at USDA’s Risk Management Whole-Farm Webpage.    

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