So maybe you sell your veggies and other goods at your local farmers markets. It's important, though, to make sure you have the proper agribusiness insurance to help protect all your products. But what kind of protection do you need? Is that already a part of your farm insurance? How much does it cost? An independent insurance agent can help answer all your questions.
Your independent insurance agent is a knowledgeable resource when it comes to insuring all aspects of your farmers market goods and can help you navigate through the entire process. And knowing how your coverage works and where to get it is essential to running a successful farming business. But first, here's a little background to help you understand farmers market product coverage.
How to Insure Your Farmers Market Products
Insuring your farm is one thing, but your products sold at a farmers market is a whole different story. Insurance coverage for your products is typically separate from your overall farm coverage, but can sometimes be included, depending on your carrier.
First, you'll want to have your independent insurance agent look at pricing and coverages for your product's specifications. So whether you sell organic honey or grass-fed beef, your coverage needs to apply adequately.
Your independent insurance agent will need to know the following to get started:
- Your product's specifics: What are you producing? What does it cost to produce? What does it cost retail? What are your gross annual sales of the product? How many farmers markets will your product be sold at? Where are these farmers markets located? Do the farmers markets have their own insurance? How is your product stored before, in-transit, and during the market hours?
- What is your product worth? This isn't the sentimental value, but what the market can bear. Meaning what will the market pay for your product and how much does it cost to replace it if the worst should happen?
- What preemptive protection do you have in place? Are there proper protocols for safe handling of your product? Is it stored correctly during all processes? How do you transport your product? Does your product need temperature-controlled environments, and how is this accomplished?
When to Insure Your Farmers Market Product
Time is of the essence. If you have a product already that isn't insured, then you'll want to get coverage in place as fast as you can. If your product is in transit to a farmers market, you'll need insurance on it in case there is a loss due to an accident, or temperature control goes out and the like. Having a conversation with your independent insurance agent regarding the different stages of coverage and how they will apply will give you useful information.
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Cost of Insuring Your Farmers Market Product
Take a moment and look at some cold, hard facts on organic food sales in the United States. The amount that US consumers spend on organic food alone is in the billions. Farmers markets are one of the most common trends in the organic food and products industry. The proof is in the organic pudding, as you can see in the graph below.
Organic food sales in the United States from 2005 to 2018 (in billion US dollars)
Now, since you see how much one study calculated for just organic food sales for a short period, you can imagine why it's so important to have insurance for your own farm products. The cost of insuring them, however, all depends. It depends on the specifics of your products, what they're worth, and exactly how much coverage you need. Every farmer has different needs, so their coverage comes with different pricing. Speaking with your independent insurance agent will get you all the details about coverage and pricing.
What Does (and Doesn't) Farmers Market Product Insurance Cover?
When it comes to insuring your farmers market product, it's important to know what goes into it. Now you need to know what the policy will actually cover and what it won't.
What your farm product insurance generally covers:
- Accidents: This can be anything from coverage for fire and smoke to loading and unloading of your product.
- Natural disasters: Volcanic eruptions and sinkholes. Typically, floods and earthquakes are covered under a separate policy.
- Weather events: Lightning, wind, hail, tornadoes, and more.
- Crimes and civil unrest: This is for theft and vandalism of your farmers market product.
- Collision or death while transporting: This is in-transit coverage for your farm product.
- Spoilage and food poisoning: After you sell your product to farmers market customers, you'll need coverage for any harm it may cause to them.
- Replacement of your farmers market product: This provides coverage for, you guessed it, your product, so if any of the above claims occur, then you will get full replacement cost, the market value of the item, or the depreciated value of the item. This all depends on your policy specifics, so discuss them with your agent.
What your farm product insurance doesn't cover:
- Natural wear and tear of your farm product
- Nonworking product due to wear and tear or general use
Farmers Market Product Liability Insurance
If you’re found to be legally responsible for causing bodily injury or property damage to other people or their property as a result of your farmers market product or booth, you’ll have coverage under the liability portion of your policy. Between that and all the other coverages your farm policy provides, you'll be in pretty good shape.
Your independent insurance agent can discuss all facets of your farm and product policies, making sure you've got the proper coverage in every area.
Why Online Quotes Aren’t Always the Best Way to Shop
Getting your insurance quotes online can be tempting. Sure, it’s fast and easy, but are the quotes you are getting actually accurate? And are you getting quotes for all the different types of coverage your business needs?
Online quotes cannot give you the whole picture. They often omit important coverage, which may result in you being unable to get compensation if something disastrous happens. And they can leave out cost-saving opportunities such as discounts and bundling opportunities that an independent agent can help you take advantage of.
Instead of getting an online quote, find an independent insurance agent near you, and schedule a one-on-one consultation to discuss your options for the best coverage for your farmers market product.
The Benefits of an Independent Insurance Agent
Independent insurance agents have access to multiple insurance companies, ultimately finding you the best coverage, accessibility and competitive pricing while working for you. And as your farm grows and your needs change, they'll be there to help you adjust your coverage, up or down, to make sure you're properly protected without overpaying. Find an independent insurance agent in your community here.
TrustedChoice.com Article | Reviewed by Candace Jenkins
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