Aug 23, 2023
Potatoes among specialty crops included in USDA insurance expansion

Potatoes are among the specialty crops included in an expansion of the USDA’s insurance coverage options.

The agency’s Risk Management Agency is expanding the availability of enterprise units to crops where the units were previously unavailable. An enterprise unit allows a producer to insure all acres of a crop in a county together, as opposed to other unit structures that separate the acreage.

“We want to make sure we are giving the nation’s agricultural producers the strongest risk management tools possible, and one of those is flexibility,” Marcia Bunger, RMA administrator, said. “This expansion of enterprise units gives producers more choices for how they can protect their operations and themselves best. That is our ultimate goal.”

Potatoes are among the specialty crops included in an expansion of the USDA’s insurance coverage options. Photo: File

Enterprise units offer lower premium rates to recognize the lower risk associated with geographic diversification, according to the USDA. In general, the larger the enterprise unit, the lesser the risk, and the greater the enterprise unit discount.

The expansion furthers RMA’s efforts to improve and expand the insurance program for specialty crops as required by the 2018 Farm Bill. It also meets producer requests for enterprise units for other actual production history (APH) crop insurance programs. 

The expanded coverage became available to the initial set of targeted crops on June 30. RMA plans to expand to dozens more specialty and other APH crop programs in the coming months.

“This expansion of enterprise units provides more producers the same options for discounted insurance coverage as row crops,” Bunger said.

The following crops will have enterprise units available beginning with the 2024 crop year:

  • Alfalfa seed
  • Cultivated wild rice
  • Forage production
  • Mint
  • Onions
  • Potatoes (enterprise units will be available in California for the 2025 crop year)

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