Crop insurance agent: First contact after washout

If there is one thing farmers should avoid at the end of this bleak crop season, it’s jumping the gun. Facing one of the biggest crop disasters in years, insured producers’ first priority should be to contact their insurance agent as to their options. “For insurance purposes, this late in the season, it’s possible they may require you to harvest your crops, if only to see what is out there,” says James Novak, an Alabama Cooperative Extension System economist and Auburn University professor of agricultural economics. “In the past, there have been situations in which a crop is a total loss and insurance adjustors have declared it as such,” he says. “But don’t do anything unless your insurance agent has checked it out.” A new Federal program known as Supplemental Revenue Assistance (SURE) covers some crop losses not handled by insurance. It may be an option for enrolled producers.