Corn Farmers to Benefit From Advanced Technology

Four-state insurance pilot program kicks in for 2008 planting season.

Published on: Dec 21, 2007

Farmers in four pilot states who plant a majority of their corn acres using Monsanto’s YieldGard Plus® with Roundup Ready® Corn 2 or YieldGard VT Triple™ technology will be able to lower their crop insurance premiums in 2008.

USDA’s Risk Management Agency announced the implementation of the Biotech Yield Endorsement, or BYE, for the 2008 crop year. BYE is a crop insurance feature that will lower insurance premiums for non-irrigated corn producers in the pilot states. It will be available and offered by all approved insurance providers.

Pilot states are Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Minnesota with potential expansion to other states depending on results from the pilot program. At this time, only Monsanto Company YieldGard triple-stack technologies are approved for the BYE program.

BYE will reduce the average cost of an insurance premium by 14% on revenue assurance policies, such as Actual Production History, Revenue Assurance, and Crop Production Coverage. On average, this discount will amount to more than $2 per acre on the grower-paid portion of the premium.

"Producers are managing risk through crop insurance and by utilizing biotechnology. Biotech traits clearly reduce the risks for corn growers while increasing their yields. A crop insurance premium discount is one more benefit to using the technology," says National Corn Growers Association President Rick Tolman.

To be eligible, farmers must plant at least 75% of their corn acres on an insured unit basis to corn hybrids containing YieldGard VT Triple or YieldGard Plus with Roundup Ready Corn 2 technologies. EPA-mandated refuge requirements must also be respected.

Program details regarding BYE will be released and available on the RMA website at www.rma.usda.gov. Producers interested in BYE should contact their local crop insurance representative.