Maintaining the integrity of the crop insurance program has become more important than ever as U.S. farmers now rely on insurance as their safety net.
“Crop insurance is going to be more important than in the past,” said Steve Verett, executive vice president, Plains Cotton Growers, during his closing remarks for the PCG annual meeting recently in Lubbock. “Insurance will be the cotton program.”
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Verett said an insurance-based program was necessary for cotton to comply with World Trade Organization requirements following sanctions from the Brazil action against the U.S. cotton program. “But we have our own critics in our own country,” Verett said. Legislators and the general public may look at the crop insurance subsidies created to offset farmer premium costs as a place to trim budgets. Any hint of wrong-doing could jeopardize the program.
“Crop insurance is too important to our own future for anyone to do anything stupid,” Verett said. “We can be our own worst enemy sometimes when it comes to crop insurance, but we can’t afford to cast any shadows over crop insurance.”