University of Maryland Extension

Maryland farmers encouraged to consider crop insurance

Image Credit: 
Edwin Remsberg

Annapolis, MD -- Maryland Secretary of Agriculture Joe Bartenfelder reminds farmers that the sales closing date to purchase crop insurance for spring seeded crops and to make changes to policies is March 15. Spring seeded crops include corn, soybeans, oats and grain sorghum.

“I encourage my fellow farmers to meet with a crop insurance agent before March 15 to ensure that they have the coverage they need to prepare for those things Mother Nature and the markets may have in store for us in 2016,” Secretary Bartenfelder said.

New in 2016 are changes from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency to make crop insurance better for farmers transitioning to certified organic production. The Contract Price Addendum allows farmers transitioning to organic production to insure certain crops at their contract price rather than the published U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) price election.

RMA has also expanded organic price premium elections to 57 crops, up from four in 2011, providing organic producers the option to protect their 2016 crops closer to the market value. Barley and wheat are among the crops for which organic price elections have been added.

For Maryland grain farmers, the University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources partners with the University of Illinois to provide a web-based tool to help make informed crop insurance decisions. Go to:

Maryland farmers have received more than $155 million in the last seven years and more than $238 million in the last 13 years from crop insurance.

Producers 2016 spring planted crops must sign up for federal crop insurance, or make any changes to existing polices by March 15.

A list of agents can be found at:

Maryland Department of Agriculture partners with the U.S. Department of Agriculture Risk Management Agency and the University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources to provide Maryland farmers with information on federal crop insurance.

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