RMA Expands Insurance Coverage for Double Cropping 

July 13, 2022

The USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) announced an expansion of the list of counties that are eligible for double crop coverage under crop insurance. Coverage will be expanded or streamlined in over 1,500 counties to double crop soybeans and sorghum behind wheat. RMA is also working with the crop insurance industry and farm organizations to help streamline and improve the written agreements for farmers that are outside the areas where coverage has been expanded. The announcement comes as part of the Administration’s efforts to support U.S. farmers during the volatility caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

"Crop insurance provides a critical risk management tool for wheat growers, and today's announcement will help expand availability for the double cropping opportunities in 2023," said NAWG President and Washington state wheat grower Nicole Berg. "NAWG appreciates the Administration for taking the thoughtful and moderate approach to examine where double crop insurance opportunities are available across the United States. Today's announcement is particularly timely to help farmers, agents, and companies become familiar with administrative changes and make the necessary adjustments."

Improvements include: 

  • For soybeans, double crop coverage will be expanded to or streamlined in at least 681 counties, including all of those that were initially targeted for review. While some additional counties were permanently added to be double crop counties, the majority of expansion removed barriers such as requiring production records and streamlined the process to get personalized coverage through a written agreement.  
  • For grain sorghum, double crop coverage will be expanded to or streamlined in at least 870 counties that were initially targeted for review. Similar to soybeans, most of these changes included streamlining the administrative burden and requirements to obtain written agreements. Written agreements provide the producer with the maximum flexibility by allowing them to obtain crop insurance coverage, but not requiring the coverage of both the spring and winter crops as in permanent double crop counties.
  • RMA will also work with the crop insurance industry and farm organizations to highlight the availability and improvements in written agreements as an option for any farmer that grows a crop outside the area where a policy is automatically offered.  

This expansion of coverage was guided by extensive outreach to nearly 70 grower groups covering 28 states. This includes a wide array of stakeholders such as producers, agents, university extension and other agricultural experts, commodity associations, state departments of agriculture and insurance companies. USDA may add additional counties as it explores these options with farmers this summer, with the final rules being locked in by the fall. Since farmers need to plan ahead for adding a winter crop to a rotation, USDA wanted to make sure they had time to consider this option and consult with local extension and agriculture experts and their crop insurance agent.   

See maps for where expanded opportunities for soybeans and sorghum are located.

Source: National Association of Wheat Growers/USDA