On the heels of the 2012 drought, farmers turned to crop insurance in record numbers to protect their crops in 2013, according to data released recently at the convention hosted by the National Crop Insurance Services (NCIS) and American Association of Crop Insurers

The industry noted that 2013 had been a landmark year for both farmers and the crop insurance industry as a whole. The year clearly showed that farmers who purchase crop insurance can bounce back with a vengeance – producing bumper wheat and corn crops – without the need for costly disaster bills. Some of the more notable statistics for the year include:

  • Farmers spent $4.5 billion to purchase insurance policies. That is up from $4.1 billion in 2012 and brings farmers’ total investment in crop insurance to $38 billion since 2000;
  • 52,000 more policies were sold in 2013 than 2012;
  • Crop insurance protected $123 billion of potential liabilities last year, as compared to $117 billion in 2012 and $114 billion in 2011;
  • A record 296 million acres, or 90 percent of insurable cropland, was covered by crop insurance in 2013. U.S. farmers protected 86 percent of eligible acres in 2012 and 84 percent of acres in 2011;
  • To date, 423,000 policies have been indemnified in 2013, a sharp fall from the record of 495,000 in 2012. As a result, taxpayer costs dropped considerably.

“The fact that farmers were able to bounce back with a vengeance from the worst drought in decades and plant bumper crops, all without a call for disaster assistance to Congress underscores the value farmers place on crop insurance and why they are buying it up and protecting a record number of acres,” said Tom Zacharias, president of NCIS.

“Crop insurance is the risk management tool of choice for farmers, ranchers, farm leaders, bankers and members of Congress for one reason: it works,” he said.