Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor | Richard A. Ball, Commissioner
Jessica A. Chittenden

October 16, 2008

Deadline for Fruit Insurance Is November 20, 2008

Informational Crop Insurance Workshops Scheduled for Producers

New York State Agriculture Commissioner Patrick Hooker today reminded fruit producers that November 20, 2008 is the deadline for obtaining insurance on their crops or making changes to existing crop insurance policies. The Commissioner also announced the dates for informational workshops focusing on crop insurance and how changes in the Federal Farm Bill will impact producers’ eligibility for disaster assistance.

"The new Farm Bill changed the eligibility requirements for disaster assistance," Commissioner Hooker said. "Without the protection of crop insurance, producers will no longer be eligible for any federal assistance if disaster hits in 2009. I encourage producers to familiarize themselves with these changes and others. One way to do so is to attend one of the informational workshops we have planned through November. These meetings will focus on apples and grapes, but will also have information regarding insurance for other fruits such as peaches."

Crop insurance products have become increasingly important in recent years due to weather related crop disasters and are critical to maintaining the economic viability of New York farms. The final date for New York producers of apples, grapes and peaches to obtain crop insurance is November 20, 2008. Current policyholders also have until November 20 to make any changes to their existing contracts.

To help producers understand the latest changes made to crop insurance, a series of producer workshops are scheduled throughout the State. These workshops will answer producer questions including coverage levels and reporting requirements. Each workshop will last approximately two hours. The workshops are sponsored through a cooperative effort of the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets and the USDA Risk Management Agency. The scheduled workshops are:

October 28, 2008 at 10:00 am (Grapes)

Jamestown Community College, North County Center, Dunkirk

                     RSVP to Jodi Creasap Gee 716-672-2191

October 29, 2008 at 6:00 pm (Apples)

Crickets Restaurant, Peru

RSVP to Paul Baker 716-807-6827

October 30, 2008 at 6:00 pm (Apples)

Half Moon Diner, Clifton Park

RSVP to Paul Baker 716-807-6827

November 5, 2008 at 6:00 pm (Apples & Grapes)

Tillman’s Village Inn, Albion

RSVP to Paul Baker 716-807-6827

November 6, 2008 at 10:00 am (Apples & Grapes)

Columbia County Cooperative Extension, Hudson

RSVP to Mike Fargione 845-691-7117

November 6, 2008 at 2:00 pm (Apples & Grapes)

Highland Research Station, Highland

RSVP to Mike Fargione 845-691-7117

November 13, 2008 at 6:00 pm (Apples)

Way Point Restaurant, North Rose

RSVP to Paul Baker 716-807-6827

The Department will also host additional workshops for other commodities in the future. Information regarding future workshops can be found at the Department’s website at

Crop insurance provides coverage against loss due to natural perils and adverse weather conditions such as hail, wind, frost, and drought. Your actual amount of coverage will be determined from your actual yields and the protection level you select. Fruit producers should consider making crop insurance an essential part of their overall risk management plan to help protect their operations from financial loss.

For more information, fruit growers in New York State should contact a local crop insurance agent or their county USDA Farm Service Agency Office as soon as possible. For a list of crop insurance agents, contact the local FSA office or visit USDA Risk Management Agency’s web site at

2008 Press Releases