Crop Insurance Today Second Quarter 2020 - 24

more than 3.9 million acres. Other states hit particularly hard (defined as more than one million
reported acres) included Illinois, Ohio, Missouri,
Arkansas, and Minnesota. All in all, the planting
progress review tells part of the story of the 2019
planting season, but the prevented planting impacts tell the rest of the story.
PREVENTED PLANTING INDEMNITIES
Figure 17 shows the major causes of crop losses for 2019. Excess moisture was responsible for
70 percent of all losses, while cold wet weather
and hail each represented another five percent of
loss. The remaining causes of loss were each responsible for under five percent.
2019 saw an unusually high level of prevented
planting loss indemnities due to unusually high
Fig. 17

moisture levels during planting. Figure 18 displays the geographical distribution of prevented
planting payments for the following causes of
loss: Excess Moisture/Precipitation/Rain, Cold
Wet Weather, and Flood. Prevented planting
indemnities were responsible for roughly 63
percent of all loss attributed to Excess Moisture
during 2019, 44 percent of Cold Wet Weather,
and 59 percent of Flood.
Figure 19 shows the 15 states with the highest levels of prevented planting payments due to
excess moisture during 2019. South Dakota tops
the list with just under $1 billion of indemnity,
followed by Illinois with $414 million, Ohio with
$389 million, and Minnesota with $343 million.
These four states represent nearly 50 percent of

2019 Causes of Loss
Heat 1%
Flood 3%
ARPI/SCO/STAX/
MP Crops Only 4%

Wind/
Excess Wind 1%

Other 5%

Drought 4%
Hail 5%
Cold Wet
Weather 5%

Data as of April 13, 2020
Source: RMA Cause of Loss files

Fig. 18

Note: Prevented Planting represents 63% of Excess Moisture,
59% of Flood, and 44% of Cold Wet Weather.

2019 Prevented Planting Indemnity Payments

Indemnity
(0 - 100,000)
(100,000 - 500,000)
(500,000 - 1,000,000)
(1,000,000 - 5,000,000)
(5,000,000 - 20,000,000)
(20,000,000 - 63,000,000)

Data as of April 13, 2020 Source: RMA Summary of Business
Perils Shown: Excess Moisture, Cold Wet Weather & Flood

24

Excess Moisture/
Precipitation/
Rain 70%

SECONDQUARTER2020

the $4.3 billion of prevented planting payments
made due to excess moisture.
[The information sources for this section were
RMA Summary of Business, Cause of Loss, and
Reinsurance Runs and NASS Quick Stats.]
RMA AND INDUSTRY RESPONSES TO
2019 PREVENTED PLANTING
As varying weather events moved through
the early spring, RMA moved expeditiously to address numerous emerging issues and
position crop insurance to be responsive and
effective during these challenging times. As
planting progress lagged due to continued and
prolonged rains, RMA provided additional
time to terminate cover crops so spring crops
could still be planted and insured. At the same
time, flood waters would not recede, and significant water moved south causing major
flooding along the Mississippi River, which
required opening the Morganza Spillway to divert the inevitable excess floodwater with crop
insurance covering this unavoidable event.
As spring moved to early summer, the
historical flooding and excessive rainfall continued, resulting in an ever-growing number
of prevented planting acres. Livestock producers and others pleaded to make greater
use of their cover crops during this particularly unusual series of weather events amid a
critical time of needed feed and forage. RMA
responded by providing greater flexibility
and allowing cover crops that could be cut
for silage, haylage and baleage, in addition to
the traditional use of cover crops for haying
and grazing. To also assist with increasing
the feed value and use of cover crops, RMA
allowed cover crops to be hayed, grazed or
harvested after September 1 rather than the
historical November 1 date. Finally, as the
extreme weather events, compounded by a
tropical storm in Louisiana, took their toll on
the transportation system, homes, and businesses in many states, RMA provided relief in
those affected states by permitting an extension of time for insured farmers to file their
acreage reports.
As the growing season moved towards
completion, the relentless wet weather did
not let up. RMA continued to take swift actions to address production and prevented
planting claims stemming from the Goshen/
Gerring-Ft. Laramie Canal tunnel collapse,
and addressing numerous issues tied to the



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