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New Farm Insurance Plan Available

SPOKANE, Wash. — Income protection with streamlined record keeping for most farm-raised crops, animals and animal products is available under newly approved insurance called Adjusted Gross Revenue Lite (AGR-Lite).

AGR-Lite provides whole-farm revenue protection against low returns due to unavoidable natural disasters and market fluctuations that affect income from commodities produced during the insurance year, according to Dave Paul, director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency Spokane regional office.

“Our goal is to provide regional producers with the best possible risk management choices,” Paul said. “With AGR-Lite, farmers now have the opportunity to purchase insurance covering all their farm production – even crops for which previously there was not a federal crop insurance policy available.”

Together with the Western Center for Risk Management Education at Washington State University, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, that initially developed AGR-Lite, gathered and presented data to the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation Board of Directors and received approval for expansion of this innovative insurance program for Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington.

“Getting AGR-Lite approved for the 2005 crop year has been a collaborative effort with state and federal agencies, grower groups, financial institutions and insurance professionals,” said Jonathan Newkirk, director of the WCRME. “This effort will continue with the purpose of giving our agricultural producers a risk management tool they will use.”

As a streamlined whole-farm revenue protection package, AGR-Lite guarantees a percentage of the gross gram revenue derived from the sale of agricultural commodities. Most farm-raised crops, animals and animal products are eligible for protections. The AGR-Lite concept is based on a producer’s five-year historical tax form information and an annual farm report to provide a level of guaranteed revenue for the insurance period. Maximum coverage amount for an AGR-Lite policy is $250,000.

The final day to obtain AGR-Lite coverage is Jan. 31, 2005. Crop insurance is sold and delivered solely through private crop insurance agents. Producers are encouraged to contact a local multi-peril crop insurance agent as soon as possible to learn additional details. A list of crop insurance agents is available at all USDA Service Centers throughout the United States or on the World Wide Web at http://www3.rma.usda.gov/tools/agents/.

An introduction to this product will be satellite transmitted on Wednesday, Dec. 1. Please call your crop insurance agent for details.

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Media Contacts

Jo Lynne, USDA-RMA, 509-353-2147