Nationwide acreage enrolled increased 46 percent in 2017

Most Idaho ranchers are missing out on the benefits that the improved Pasture, Rangeland, and Forage (PRF) could provide to their bottom line. The improved PRF is the first USDA insurance program allowing ranchers to manage their risks during short-term drought. PRF is designed to address reduced cash flow when precipitation falls below average. Ranchers pay premiums, but they are discounted by at least 50 percent. In 2017, in Idaho, PRF only insured 117,607 acres (graph 1). Nationwide, after positive experiences ranchers increased the amount insured by 20 million acres, insuring 70 million acres in 2017 (graph 2).

PRF has proven successful in Idaho as producers have paid $1.4 million in premiums and received $2.6 million in indemnities (graph 3). Nationwide producers have paid $678 million in premiums and received $1.25 billion in indemnities (graph 4). Costs to insure rangeland vary, depending on factors such as premium rates, coverage level, and the productivity in your area. For 2017, the average cost of PRF in Idaho was $3.40 per acre. Ranchers can insure BLM, Forest Service, and private rangeland and perennial hay acres.

PRF has the potential to be a game changer for ranchers. It has a track record of success all across the nation, including rangelands in the West. Idaho Farm Bureau Insurance understands PRF and has the expertise to help you make the right decision for your operation.

Because PRF is based on historical precipitation data, we can provide a quick, ranch-specific analysis — including an estimate demonstrating how PRF would have performed for your ranch. This analysis shows whether PRF would have provided the assistance needed during historical droughts. Contact Brandon Willis, an independent crop specialist for Idaho Farm Bureau Insurance who focuses on crop insurance for ranchers. Sign up for 2018 closes November 15th. You can call Brandon at (435) 213-0463 or email For more information go to