Agricultural contractors are becoming an increasingly important part of farming in the UK - from specialist firms that have been set up exclusively for this purpose, to existing farms that have diversified. As the UK’s leading rural insurer, providing cover to 70% of agricultural contractors, we know the contracting industry inside and out.
That’s why we offer a range of specialist contractor covers with a tailored approach, whether you’re purely an agricultural contractor or you primarily farm your own land. You’ll need to have an existing Farm Select or Commercial Select product to enable this.
The additional cover available includes:
- Crop management – we will indemnify you if you damage someone else’s crops due to spray drift or spreading fertiliser in the wrong place
- Agricultural payments – you’re covered if you accidentally cause a reduction in another farmer’s BPS (or future scheme) payments.
Download our Agricultural Contracting leaftlet [PDF: 226KB]
Top tips for agri-contractors to consider:
Whilst there are similarities between running your own farm and contracting out your services, there are also several key considerations: contract farming requires a different set of skills and business approach. In addition, the risks and liabilities associated with working your own land is very different from someone else’s. This means your insurance needs are also likely to change, so it’s important to make sure you have the right agri-contracting insurance cover in place.
If you don’t have the right level of insurance, it could impact the amount you’re paid if you make a claim. Whatever your plans are for agri-contracting, we can help you make the transition. In the meantime, here are our top tips for you to consider:
- Avoid underinsurance – If you expand your business to provide contracting services, then it’s essential to have insurance that covers these new activities and any new assets you may use. Otherwise you risk being underinsured, which means you could face an unexpected financial shortfall in the event of a claim. To find out more including whether you have the right cover in place, speak to your local NFU Mutual agency.
- Regularly check your vehicles and store securely and safely when not in use – If you’re undertaking a lot of work, or machines are constantly on the move, ensure you regularly check them for defects. In addition, it may sound obvious but ensure vehicles are locked away securely overnight and when not in use. Remove keys and store away carefully, never leave keys in unattended vehicles and machinery.
- Training - Ensure your staff have the relevant training for the equipment they’re using, and they’re familiar with the way it operates. In addition, ensure staff have access to all necessary safety equipment should any accidents arise. We know comprehensive public and employers' liability cover is essential for contractors, so have developed these additional covers for your business, We can also offer contractors specialist risk management though NFU Mutual Risk Management Services Limited, and plant inspection services via our partner Vulcan Inspection Services.
- Contingency planning - At busy times of the year, including harvest, ensure you have contingency plans should a machine malfunction or breakdown. These can be critical windows to harvest crops and get the best yields for the farm so ensure you have a ‘plan b’ to help carry out tasks should the worst happen.
- Have an awareness of industry change – whether you’re a contractor undertaking a job, or a farmer seeking support of a contractor, it’s important you have an awareness of what you can and can’t do under various subsidy schemes and what future changes could mean for your business.
Whether you're a farmer, grower or contractor, with us you can rest easy knowing your business is in good hands. Speak to your local agency office to find out more and discuss the most appropriate solution for your needs.
Agricultural contractors and their role in the farming industry
Will Evans our resident host, is joined by Ian Maddever - an agricultural contracting expert, and Charlie Yorke from NFU Mutual to talk about agricultural contracting, on how the industry has changed and the role it now plays in the farming industry.
You can listen to more of our farming podcast on our Ahead of the Fields page.
Agricultural Contracting podcast transcript