Commissioner Lara orders an increase in the limits of the agricultural insurance policy | Local News


Lara’s decisions arose out of a study launched after a wave of complaints from the wine and agriculture industries, the department’s first-ever study into forest fire losses and the insurance market. commercial. This study was published alongside Lara’s request to increase policy limits and quantified many of the issues facing vineyard owners and their insurers.

The study showed that wineries in northern California suffered the brunt of the losses from the fires in California.

While the northern coastal region, including Napa, “accounts for only 8% of the state’s commercial farm and farm owner insurance market, the total losses incurred accounted for 45% of the state’s total. for those years, ”the study found.

According to this report, local wineries have suffered over 90% of industry forest fire losses since 2017, and as a result, more wineries are seeking increased coverage in case winds violent would blow in their direction. However, research has found that the number of non-renewed policies has increased since 2017, with the number of non-renewals initiated by the insurer unilaterally canceling a policy from 118 to 616 during that time.

The study found that FAIR plan policies accounted for about 13% of new coverages launched in the past year, as homeowners could no longer get regular insurance.

“I’m not surprised by the data because we knew that most of the losses were hitting the agriculture and vineyards in these counties… We knew this anecdotally from our members,” said Ryan Klobas of the Farm Bureau. “Now that the data has been released and has actually shown that this is the case, it really shows that agriculture, not only in Napa Valley, but only in California, has experienced very particular challenges in terms of water coverage. forest fire insurance. “

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