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Strategic insurance at the heart of better farm management

by Neil Lyon, 09 July 2018

FARMERS need to be more strategic when it comes to insurance by insuring the big risks that could have large impacts and not insuring those they can mitigate themselves, according to Achmea Australia chief operations officer, Ian Yard-Smith.

Ian Yard-Smith

Speaking at the Innovation Generation conference today at Wagga Wagga in southern New South Wales, Mr Yard-Smith said cropping farmers, who ran big businesses with high machinery outlays and sophisticated operations, generally managed their insurance well.

But, he said there were many risks that farmers didn’t need to insure, both at the lower level – a cheap pump, for example – and at the top-end.

“My message is that farmers can become better farmers by taking better control of their insurance portfolio, whether it is at the lower end where they can fix the thing themselves or the higher level,” he said.

Mr Yard-Smith said astute farmers could use the insurance risk assessments of their farms to better manage their operations and fine-tune their insurance portfolio.

“Insurance companies are very good at identifying risk and what it is that they are prepared to take on. So, when you get to that point with an insurance company you know they are the risks you, as a farmer, really need to be looking at,” he said.

“Insurance can actually make you a better farmer because it is like a ‘cheat sheet’. What the insurers will insure you for is great, and a lot of it is ‘set and forget’ with your insurer which is terrific. But if you get to the point where they won’t insure something or the premium will be really expensive you know that that is a risk you, as a farmer, need to focus on.

“So, if you focus on those things either at the lower end or the higher end and take control of your portfolio you will ultimately save money and also be a better risk for insurers. You will be a better farmer as a result.”

More information on the Innovation Generation conference, July 9-11, Wagga Wagga, NSW: https://www.innovationgeneration.com.au/

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