Crop insurance provider AgriLogic has been gathering data from hemp growers and processors across the United States while it develops a federal yield-based insurance program for hemp crops on behalf of the USDA.
Data collected from producers is expected to provide a stronger and more robust insurance product that will benefit growers, processors, consumers, and taxpayers across the country, according to Virginia Congressman Denver Riggle (R-VA).
Riggle and a bipartisan group of seven other Vermont congressional members wrote to AgriLogic on Wednesday asking that Virginia be included in the hemp crop insurance program, which could begin by the 2020 growing season with approval from the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation Board of Directors.
In addition to Riggle, the group included Representatives Morgan Griffith (R), Don Beyer (D), Ben Cline (R), Elaine Luria (D), and Abigail Spanberger (D) as well as Senators Tim Kaine (D) and Mark Warner (D).
AgriLogic announced on Thursday that it would be including Virginia in the plans that it will be submitting to the USDA next week.
“I am excited at the progress we have made by adding Virginia to the AgriLogic hemp crop insurance program,” said Congressman Riggleman. “This program will allow for exponential growth in hemp production and is a huge win for Virginia and the 5th District. Hemp growers in Virginia are prime to lead and the 5th District is prime to lead based on its historic production of tobacco.”
Members of the group say that Virginia’s inclusion in the pilot program will allow producers to provide more effective protection for their crops in the event of a natural disaster.
Initial drafts of the pilot program did not include Virginia and the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services was not notified of the option of participating until after the first pilot states had been chosen.