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Simplify Acreage Reporting with Precision Technology

The first year the Grimms connected precision data to their crop insurance, they appreciated the convenience. With each subsequent year, they have seen the benefit of applying their data from the field to their policy.

Sue Grimm recalled the trips her husband, Terry, made each year to the Farm Service Agency: “Normally, they wouldn’t have everything pulled, so it would be a drawn-out affair.”

“Now,” Terry said, “Chad, our insurance officer, sends it up there and they have every farm file pulled out. They know what field is corn, what field is beans. . . We come walking in the door, they come over with a pile of files and say we have yours right here through Chad’s information. We’ve just got to make sure it’s right and sign.”

“It’s a huge time saver.”

Chad Loecke, the Grimms’ insurance officer in the Manchester, Iowa, office, said he is pulling data from his customers’ monitors after they finish planting and again after harvest. From the monitors, he gets the plant date, crop type and number of acres planted.

These aren’t government acres that producers have submitted at their FSA office, Loecke said. “These are actual acres that they have planted in the field and that they feel are a much more accurate number.”

Producers who are reporting fewer – more accurate – acres with their precision data can see financial gains within five to 10 years, he said.

“It reduces their premium in the short run. This might not be a big number because generally you’re decreasing your acres by five to 10 acres. But for some producers that can be a very big number.

“The bigger thing is when you are insuring fewer acres against higher production. That gives you a higher production number per acre, so the producer is insuring more bushels and getting to insure more revenue dollars per acre.”
– Chad Loecke, insurance officer, Manchester, Iowa

The table below illustrates the impact of accurate reporting for insurance purposes.

 
 

Impact of Precision Technology

For this example, assume:

  • 85% RP Policy
  • Premium (with Hail and Private Products) – $50.00
  • Approved Yield – 177
  • Total production – 180,468.8 bu
  • Reported FSA 578 Planted Acres – 1,000
  • Actual Planted Acres using Precision Technology – 944.3

 

Item

FSA 578 Data

Precision Ag Data

Total Difference

Per Acre Difference

10-Year Total

15-Year Total

Premium Total

$50,000

$47,215

$2,785

$2.95

$27,850
savings

$41,775
savings

Yield / Acre per Unit Database

180.5

191.1

+5.6%

 

 

 

Effect on Next Year's Approved Yield

 

+1.605
bushels / acre

 

 

 

 

Additional Dollars of Rev Guarantee

 

 

$515

$0.54

$5,146

$7,719

 
 

Of course, not everyone sees the same results. Technology is one reason a producer might not experience gains, Loecke said: “You’ve got to have the row shutoffs. You’ve got to have the auto swath to get it dialed down to the exact acre. If you go in there with a 12-row planter and only six rows shut off at a time, you may come up with longer acres because the planter is overplanting quite a bit.” 

For most producers, technology is not a roadblock. However, sharing data can be a concern. For the purpose of crop insurance, Loecke said, “we just need acres, plant dates and crop information to give to the Approved Insurance Provider (AIP). Producers get to use their acres and their information to insure their crop.”

Sharing data is easy, especially if the producer and crop insurance agent connect in the cloud. The producer hits a button after planting or harvesting and the agent grabs the information to upload for the insurance company.

“The producer can do this all from the tractor and keep on doing the things they need to do to make money on the farm and not have to rush to the FSA office and try to get me 578s and maps, then meet with me to get that paperwork. Everything is done electronically,” Loecke said.

The producer can even provide an electronic signature through DocuSign after reviewing and approving documents before they are submitted to the AIP.  Loecke said once he has the signed documents, he forwards an acreage report to FSA.

“I’m doing the running around and doing it electronically, so the producer can keep farming,” he said.

 
 

Precision Technology Adds Value

Precision Technology Data

Crop Insurance Benefit

Planted Acres
  • May lower premiums
  • Provide greater accuracy in policy, mapping, etc.
  • Prevent plant and replant claims supporting documentation
Electronic Reporting
  • Less paperwork
  • Quicker reporting and accuracy of reports
  • Direct reporting to insurance company – no manual data entry errors
Harvest Yields
  • More accurate yield and revenue guarantees
  • Acceptable records for claims processing
  • Accuracy and timing of harvest reports

 

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