In their May survey, the Purdue Ag Barometer added a few questions to gauge farmer sentiment about federal crop insurance. Turns out, the majority of farmers find the program to be effective, but they don’t want to pay more for it.
As usual, crop insurance is one of the hottest topics being discussed during farm bill debates happening in Congress.
“Responding to several questions related to farm program legislation, only 25% of producers in this month’s survey indicated the current farm program provides an adequate financial safety net,” says James Mintert the barometer’s principal investigator and director of Purdue University’s Center for Commercial Agriculture. “Farmers have a much more positive perspective of the current crop insurance program, however, as two-thirds of respondents that purchased crop insurance in 2018 indicated crop insurance does provide an adequate financial safety net.”
However, farmers don’t find the current ARC-County (Agricultural Risk Coverage) and PLC (Price Loss Coverage) income support programs included in the 2014 farm bill to be effective. In fact, only 25% of the producers think those programs are working.
The survey also gauged farmer sentiment around removing some of the premium subsidy of federal crop insurance which is a recommendation often made during farm bill debate.
When asked if producers would be willing to pay 50% more for their insurance premiums, 54% of the framers said the increased cost would cause them to either change their coverage level or find a new program. Interestingly, 26% of the respondents said they would not purchase crop insurance next year if their cost increased by 50%.