WHY SHOULD I GET CROP INSURANCE FOR MY VINEYARD?
The Oregon Wine Industry is continuing to grow every year. Wine sales show good trends upward as well as the price per bottle the Oregon Wines are getting. With these trends upward the Vineyard Industry continues to see positive traction. With that comes more plantings and also more investment into the industry from Non-Oregon Natives. The Oregon Wine Industry is big business and there are more and more people getting into it. The demand for Oregon Wine is getting higher and the availability of proper ground is becoming more sparse. The increased value in the wine continues to drive higher prices for the grapes as well. With all of these influences, even for the small vineyard owner, their crop has become more and more valuable. When it comes to most operations what do people consider the most valuable? Usually they will then insure whatever it is that has the most value.
In our lives we insure ourselves with life insurance. We insure our cars with automobile insurance. We insurance our homes with homeowners insurance, and we can go down the list. A Winery and/or Vineyard will usually carry liability and some form of coverage on the things they deem most valuable: the equipment, barrels, buildings, etc. We protect everything that it takes to make, bottle, store, manage and sell the wine. However, there is a drop off when it comes to those that actually insure the most important part of the process, the grapes! Sometimes the thought crosses our mind of “what’s the worst that could happen?” This doesn’t just happen with Oregon Grape Crop Insurance, it happens with many other types of crop insurance also. For some reason we tend to neglect the most valuable part of our operation. Without the grapes, there isn’t any wine, and without the wine there isn’t a way to pay for the operation we’ve created around it. So why should you get Crop Insurance for you Oregon Vineyard, because what would you do in the event of a loss without it?
As of 2015 some of the numbers show that only 5,805 acres of Grapes in Oregon were insured. In 2014 there were approximately 27,000 planted acres of Vineyards in Oregon. That leaves a lot of uninsured acres and a statewide industry dependent on those vineyards to produce grapes that contributed millions of dollars to the state’s economy. The value of the grapes harvested in 2015 was estimated around $128,000,000. With a crop that valuable it is worth insuring don’t you think?
We all know that Oregon Wines are unique, and that comes from the grapes used to make that wine. Some of the elements that help make them unique are the climate. However, that climate isn’t always conducive for good grape growing. Adverse weather is a covered cause of loss for grape production. Depending on the year and the weather, insects can play a vital role in the success or failure of a crop. Oregon Grape Crop Insurance can protect from production loss due to insect damage. Another element that comes into play is plant disease, which again is covered with a crop insurance protection plan. These are some of the covered causes of loss an insurance plan will help protect against.
Oregon Grape Crop Insurance will require a few things for the vineyard to be insurable. You have to have a share in the crop, they have to be grown for wine, juice raisins or canning, the vineyard has to be inspected and considered acceptable, the vineyard has to have reached fourth leaf, and it has to have produced at least a two ton average in one of the last three crop years. The plans are available in Benton, Clakamas, Douglas, Hood River, Jackson, Josephine, Lane, Linn, Marion, Morrow, Polk, Umatilla, Wasco, Washington, and Yamhill counties.
For more information visit the RMA Website: http://www.rma.usda.gov/fields/wa_rso/2016/grape.pdf
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