What is in this article?:
- New tools protect crop producers when dire weather strikes
- Total Weather Insurance
- eWeatherRisk contracts
Weather insurance can help protect farmers' bottom lines when destructive weather strikes. Read additional weather stories from Farm Industry News:
Total Weather Insurance
The Climate Corporation’s flagship product is called Total Weather Insurance (TWI). Although it is a stand-alone product, it is designed to supplement federal crop insurance. Like Multiple Peril Crop Insurance, it has a March 15 deadline for coverage of 2012 crops.
TWI is designed to address the gap between federal crop insurance coverage, which insures up to 85% of historic yields, and actual yield. “We are looking at top-end bushels that ensure the grower’s profit,” Hamlin says.
Although TWI can cover most weather perils from planting through harvest (hail is a notable exception), it’s designed to allow customers to zero in on specific perils if they wish, and buy coverage on as many or as few acres as they want. Complete packages cost $30 to $40/acre or more for corn, but insuring against specific perils — such as excessive moisture during planting — costs significantly less.
An example TWI policy for corn on an east-central Indiana farm near Lynn highlights available coverage. The policy, which has a $36.18/acre premium, would insure against delayed and late planting, daytime and nighttime heat stress, a cooler-than-normal growing season, early frost, drought and excess rain. Each policy highlights theoretical payouts based on 30 years of local weather data. In the example policy, the average annual payout would have been $12.43/acre. The largest payout over the period — $180/acre.
Policies are automatically customized to a grower’s operation, including crop, location and soil type — with soil type data available in 30-ft. grids across the U.S. Policies precisely define how various stresses are measured using temperatures from the customer’s choice of area weather stations, plus Doppler radar-based rainfall amounts in 2.5-mile grids from the National Weather Service. Payouts, minus premium costs, are made within 10 days of the closing of each weather stress window. Remaining premiums are due at the end of the growing season.
Throughout the growing season, customers can access local weather data on the company’s website to monitor weather stress measurements versus policy parameters. Policies are sold through insurance agents, who also typically handle Multiple Peril Crop Insurance. To locate an agent, visit www.climate.com.