Association Hosts State Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara

This past week the Association, along with several agricultural organizations hosted State Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara and his staff.  This meeting was a follow-up to a meeting the Association had with the Commissioner late last year, where the Association warned the Commissioner of skyrocketing rates for property and casualty insurance as well as stock insurance for our agricultural products.  In some cases, the have been more than 200% increases in rates or even unwillingness to cover agricultural commodities for the full value.  Some of our members have had to get multiple policies just to cover onsite inventories of product.  Much of this is related to the devastating losses associated with the catastrophic wildfires over the past two years, and a couple of very expensive losses at a couple of specific agricultural facilities.  With a couple of firms leaving the state, rates have skyrocketed and our members are feeling the impact.  There was a lot of good discussion defining the issues.  A more specific follow-up meeting will be held in the next month or two to explore potential solutions to help reduce or at least control costs.  Joining the Association at this meeting were California Citrus Mutual, California Fresh Fruit Association, and the Nisei Farmers League.