For Immediate Release
New Forage Insurance Program a Small Step in the Right Direction
On February 25th, 2016, the Ministry of Agriculture and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada announced the 2016 Crop Insurance Program. The Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) believes that many of the changes announced are positive ones, although there is still more that needs to be done to improve forage insurance and increase the benefits to producers under the program.
“Both crop and forage insurance are important programs that provide relief to producers. The changes announced yesterday are indeed positive, especially a much needed increase to the crop insurance budget to $166 million for 2016,” said SARM President Ray Orb. Specific changes that have been announced to the forage insurance programs include the removal of the 50 per cent cap on the Variable and In-Season Price options, an increase in forage establishment coverage from $55 to $70 per acre, and making it easier to update individual yield history with a producer’s own production records.
In late 2015 SARM was a part of a working group that consisted of the Saskatchewan Cattleman’s Association (SCA), the Saskatchewan Stock Growers Association (SSGA) and the Saskatchewan Crop Insurance Corporation (SCIC). This group was assembled with the purpose of discussing the forage insurance program, identifying gaps in the program and then providing recommendations to SCIC to address those gaps for the 2016 year.
While some of the changes announced this year are positive, the recommendations given by the working group were not enacted. SARM is thankful for the opportunity to provide comments but is hopeful that the positive relationship and open dialogue will continue in the hopes of further changes in the future. “Overall SARM is fine with the changes to the forage insurance program and so we look forward to a continued collaboration to resolve the issues” says SARM President Ray Orb.
For more information please contact:Jay MeyerExecutive Director(306) 761-3721