By Steven Johnson and Willy Klein, Iowa State University
The frequent rains that have soaked Iowa this year have left many corn and soybean fields unplanted or with flooded areas. Many producers are wondering what options they have under their multiple peril crop insurance (MPCI) policies.
Fortunately, more than 90 percent of the insured corn and soybean acres in Iowa are covered by MPCI, which includes replant, delay and prevented planting coverage.
Q: What should a producer do if their planted crops are affected by the flooding?
A: Notify their crop insurance agent within 72 hours of the loss. If they qualify, the replant option provides a payment reflecting 8 bushels of corn or 3 bushels of soybeans per acre times the projected price of $5.65 per bushel corn and $12.87 per bushel soybeans, respectively. So replant will provide about $45 per acre for corn and over $38 per acre for soybeans in 2013.
Q: What if a producer didn’t have their crops planted yet, what are the late planting dates in Iowa?
A:. May 31 – Final planting date for Corn
June 15 – Final planting date for Soybeans
In Iowa, the crop insurance "late planting period" for corn begins on June 1. Corn can still be planted after this date, but the insurance guarantee on those acres is reduced by 1 percent per day until they are planted. Corn acres planted after June 25 will receive insurance coverage equal to 60 percent of their original guarantee. Producers should keep accurate records of planting dates on all remaining acres. The late planting period for soybeans in Iowa is from June 16 through July 10.
Beginning June 1, corn producers with unplanted acres have three choices: plant corn as soon as possible with a reduced guarantee, shift to soybeans with full insurance coverage, or apply for prevented planting. Prevented planting acres are insured at 60 percent of their original guarantee. Those acres may have a cover crop established on them or may be left idle (black dirt).
Q: Isn’t there a 20-20 rule for coverage?
A: Yes, to qualify for an indemnity payment under the replanted, delayed or prevented planting provisions, a minimum area of 20 acres or 20 percent of the insured unit, whichever is smaller, must be affected.
A unit could be a field or a farm – if you elected an optional whole farm or basic unit. An enterprise unit could also have been elected. This choice reflects the insured's corn acres combined in a particular county to determine loss or their soybean acres.