Talk to insurance reps before taking damaged crops for forage


Talk to insurance reps before taking damaged crops for forage

A farmer and crop insurance agent says crops damaged by drought or other weather problems can be harvested early for forage, but there is an important step to take first. “You need to talk to your agent and you need to talk to your insurance company before you do anything.”

Amy Penterman

Amy Penterman has been a crop insurance agent for more than twenty years.  She is also a dairy farmer and current President of the Dairy Business Association.  Penterman tells Brownfield there are many options that won’t hurt farmers on the indemnity side with their crops, and it won’t matter which insurance company or agent because USDA’s Risk Management Agency oversees all crop insurance guidelines. “So what you’re going to want to do is when you’re talking with your adjuster, they’re going to give you the guidelines for what kind of strips you need to leave if you need to leave strips when they come out to do appraisals. They’re going to help walk you through what you need to do with that crop and what options that you have.”

Penterman says she is getting more questions from farmers asking what they can do, what if there won’t be enough of a grain crop, and can they use the crop to help neighbors who need forage for their cows? “So the calls are coming in, and it’s best to get your claims submitted early because what can happen is if you don’t get a claim turned in and you do something in the field, you could jeopardize an indemnity payout, so I can’t stress enough to get that claim filed and make sure you talk to an adjuster.”

Penterman says many of her clients chopped soybeans and corn back in 2012, and it did make a difference when it came to having more feed without affecting indemnity payments. “Your losses are going to be based on what that grain portion is out in the field, not what that forage value is coming off of the field.”

Penterman says she expects several crop insurance claims this year, but probably not a lot of claims in her home area of central Wisconsin.  She says adjusters are waiting to see how corn and soybeans finish in dry areas before any payouts would be made.