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New Olive Pilot Crop Insurance Program Approved for Selected Counties in California

WASHINGTON, Dec 6, 2011 - The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) announced today a new a pilot insurance program for table and oil olives in 12 California counties, beginning with the 2012 crop year. The sales closing date is January 31, 2012.

The pilot Olive Crop Insurance Program is an Actual Production History product that insures a grower's yield. The two-year, production-based policy features a new approach for addressing alternate bearing commodities like olives, where production can vary significantly with years of low production, or "off" years, typically followed by years of high production, or "on" years.

The program will be available in Tulare, Tehama, Glenn, Madera, Fresno, Butte, Kern, San Joaquin, Shasta, and Colusa counties for table olives and in Tulare, Tehama, Glenn, Madera, Fresno, Butte, San Joaquin, Colusa, Yolo, and Sutter counties for oil olives. Coverage levels from the catastrophic level to 75 percent are available.

Producers elect a coverage level and price election percentage that remains in effect for the two-year life of the policy. Because production is reported annually, however, the approved yield is recalculated, adjusting to account for cases where the unit is expected to be either "on or off" for the following year. Any losses incurred will be indemnified on a year-to-year basis. RMA has published the pilot Olive Crop Insurance Program provisions and related documentation on its website at www.rma.usda.gov.

The plan was approved in September 2011 under procedures allowing private submitters to present proposed insurance plans directly to the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation Board of Directors for consideration as insurance products. The Olive Growers Council of California and AgriLogic Inc. submitted the plan.

The Obama Administration, with Agriculture Secretary Vilsack's leadership, has worked tirelessly to strengthen rural America, implement the Farm Bill, maintain a strong farm safety net, and create opportunities for America's farmers and ranchers. U.S. agriculture is currently experiencing one of its best years in decades thanks to the productivity, resiliency, and resourcefulness of our producers. Today, net farm income is at record levels while debt has been cut in half since the 1980s. Overall, American agriculture supports 1 in 12 jobs in the United States and provides American consumers with 86 percent of the food we consume, while maintaining affordability and choice. The Obama Administration has aggressively worked to expand export opportunities and reduce barriers to trade, helping to push agricultural exports to record levels in 2011 and beyond. Strong agricultural exports are a positive contribution to the U.S. trade balance, support more than 1 million American jobs and boost economic growth.

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