September 1, 2019

Protecting Your Farm Machinery

Farmers have been innovators and early adopters of technology for hundreds of years. It makes perfect sense: operating a farm with machines improves germination rates, allows more land to be worked, and boosts harvest. Farm machinery adoption also extends to livestock farming. For poultry, farm machinery has improved the quality of life for birds by monitoring temperature and air quality as well as tracking growth. In a dairy, advances in milking equipment have progressed so far, robotic milking machines can relieve farmers of the labour intensive milking schedule.

Now as machines have become larger and use more technology (like GPS, artificial intelligence, and autonomous driving), it results in a greater cost to purchase, rent, or lease. Whichever solution works for your farm, remember to discuss farm machinery with your insurance broker to protect your operations.

What is fixed farm machinery?

Farm equipment that is attached to your farm building used for farming. Often this type of machinery is protected under a policyholder’s building coverage or a special form covering a specific type of machine. Examples of fixed farm machinery may include:

  • Computer equipment
    • robotic milking equipment
    • misters
    • alarms
    • etc.
  • Egg sorting machine
  • Drying machine
  • Milking machine
  • Refrigeration

What is mobile farm machinery?

Generally, farming equipment that moves, will fall into the category of mobile farm machinery. Examples of mobile farm machinery may include:

  • Tractors
  • Combines
  • Sprayers
  • Threshers
  • Seeders
  • Augers
  • Harvesting equipment
  • Irrigation equipment
  • Loaders
  • Balers

At Mutual Fire Insurance, policyholders with mobile farm machinery coverage may be eligible for replacement cost on farm machinery up to 10 years old with proof of purchase.

What else can be covered?

Loss of Use

If your farm machinery is damaged due to an insured peril, such as fire, Loss of Use coverage may respond to pay for the costs associated to rent other equipment. Loss of Use overage ends as soon as you are able to fire up your farm machine, in other words, when your machine is repaired or replaced up to the limit of the policy.

Rented Machinery

This type of insurance covers a policyholder for loss or damage to a rented farm machine while it is in their care. Renting is not the same as leasing. Usually, a farmer only needs to rent mobile farm machinery for a short time (as little as just one day) whereas a lease would extend over a few years.

Example of Coverage

Picture this: a six-year-old seeder is damaged beyond repair due to the explosion of a nearby propane tank in storage. The farmer has purchased replacement cost mobile farm machinery coverage and is able to verify the date of purchase with their insurance adjuster. A new seeder is purchased for $175,000, less the $10,000 deductible, and the farmer is reimbursed $165,000. The farmer also purchased Loss of Use coverage and is able to rent a seeder to continue planting until the new seeder is delivered to their property.

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