Sorghum growers eligible for 2012 Climate Corp. weather insurance

The Climate Corp., to which many farmers were introduced last year by its former name, WeatherBill, is now rolling out a line of coverage for the 2012 Grain Sorghum crop.

Sorghum growers eligible for 2012 Climate Corp. weather insurance

The Climate Corp., to which many farmers were introduced last year by its former name, WeatherBill, is now rolling out a line of coverage for the 2012 Grain Sorghum crop.

The weather insurance product, offered as Total Weather Insurance Sorghum 2012, or TWI Sorghum, is a new, technology-enhanced approach to insurance that protects farmers against weather-related crop loss.

David Friedberg, CEO of The Climate Corp., said sorghum yields in the United States were the lowest in eight years in 2011 because of heat and drought stress on the crop.

What the company offers, he says, is protection for sorghum growers against losses that come from weather-related production shortfalls. The insurance product is paid above and beyond any federal crop insurance.

Key Points:

• The Climate Corp. offers sorghum coverage for 2012.

• Protection pays on weather events, not on crop’s loss assessment.

• New features make data more accurate and more local.


The Climate Corp.’s Total Weather Insurance pays when weather events in a particular location will result in reduced yield for crops, based on weather history and historical yield and loss data.

The plan does not require verification of crop yield, planting volume or inspections prior to payment for damages. Rather, it pays out when weather events that reduce yield are documented to have occurred on covered acreage. Payments are automatically triggered when events occur without the need for filing claims or having an adjuster look at the crop.

The 2012 sorghum coverage provides protection from six key weather events:

• If excessive precipitation that delays timely planting and other fieldwork occurs, the plan pays.

• If low heat units occur, producing a cool growing season that reduces growth and yield potential, the plan pays.

• If early freeze occurs, preventing sorghum from reaching full maturity, the plan pays.

• If there is excess local rainfall that can lead to standing water, starving the crop of oxygen and promoting disease, the plan pays.

• If there is drought that depletes soil moisture and that could cause wilting and limit head size occurs, the plan pays.

• If there is daytime heat stress that reduces crop growth or results in ineffective reproduction, the plan pays.

For the 2012 season, TWI Sorghum offers precision coverage and weather-monitoring software that determines what weather conditions can make or break production on an individual grower’s farm, and recommends coverage based on that analysis.

This year’s rainfall grids will be based on precision rainfall grids powered by National Weather Service radar-based data. The 2.5-mile by 2.5-mile grids allow a grower to select a precise location for TWI coverage with more accuracy than that provided by land-based weather stations.

Another new feature is Soil Moisture Tracker, a daily assessment of excess rain or drought conditions based on an estimate of the amount of water entering the soil through rainfall, or leaving through plant water use and evaporation. Soil Moisture Tracker uses an ultra-high resolution agronomic database that looks that soil type and soil depth for every 30- by 30-foot land grid across the continental United States.

To get sorghum coverage for 2012, growers must sign up by March 15. To find an agent in your area, go to www.climate.com.

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This article published in the March, 2012 edition of KANSAS FARMER.

All rights reserved. Copyright Farm Progress Cos. 2012.

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