Pasture, Rangeland and Forage

PRF is a risk management program offered to farmers and ranchers who rely on pasture, rangeland or forage acreage for haying and grazing. There currently are two pilot programs under PFR: Rainfall Index and Vegetation Index. These programs are based on rainfall indices and vegetation greenness to provide livestock producers the ability to purchase protection for losses of forage produced for grazing or harvested for hay.

Rainfall Index: The Rainfall Index is based on National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration data and uses an approximate 12 X 12 mile grid. Producers must select at least two, 2-month time periods in which precipitation is important during the growth and production of the forage species. These time periods are called index intervals. Insurance payments to the producer suffering a loss are calculated based on the deviation from normal precipitation with the grid and index interval(s) selected. This insurance coverage is for a single peril – lack of precipitation.

Vegetation Index: The Vegetation Index uses the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data from the U.S. Geological Survey Earth Resources Observation and Science center. The NDVI is an alternative measure of vegetation greenness and correlates to forage condition and productive capacity in approximately 4.8 x 4.8 mile grids. In general, the healthier the plants in a given grid, the higher the NDVI value. With this plan of insurance, producers may select one of more 3-month time period(s) that represent a producer’s forage species production. These time periods are called index intervals. As with Rainfall Index, the losses calculated using the Vegetation Index are indemnified based on the deviation from normal within the grid and index interval(s) selected.