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Things to consider before becoming an agricultural contractor

If you have an interest in farming and enjoy a hands-on, manual career working predominantly outside, then a career as an agricultural contractor may be of interest to you. Good practical agricultural skills, knowledge of the sector and being able to use farm machinery are key for this role.

Working as an agricultural contractor provides a service to the farming industry who haven’t the resources available for certain roles. You will likely be self-employed or perhaps have your own company and you may specialise in one or several areas of the farm business.

Agricultural contracting plays a key role in farming across the UK, allowing farmers to carry out work without having to invest in the latest kit, have specialist knowledge or expertise. In carrying out these services, you want to make sure your contracting business is covered.

Contracting services by sub-category include:-

  • Agricultural operations – dealing with land, fields, or crops including fertilization, widespread chemical application, harvesting crops, and seed processing
  • Mobile operations – offering equipment that can be temporarily set up for seasonal use by farms
  • Livestock – working with any type of farm animal or process associated with farm animals.

When looking for agricultural contractors' insurance the key insurance covers that you would need to consider are: -

Vehicles insurance for trucks/tractors/machinery including

  • Implements
  • Attachments
  • Trailers

Public/product liability insurance protecting the business against the following: -

  • Damage to crops being treated
  • Loss of yield (failure of crop to achieve expected standard of growth or yield)
  • Spray drift
  • Crop striping
  • Errors and omissions (e.g. failure to treat, wrong field sprayed)
  • Failure to germinate
  • Failure of chemical to perform its function
  • Incorrect advice given with products supplied provided no fee for that advice is charged
  • Incorrect agronomy advice resulting in loss (including reduced yield) or damage to crops provided no fee for that advice is charged
  • Environmental clean-up costs related to public liability

Employers’ liability to protect the business against any accidents/injuries to any permanent staff and/or labour only subcontractors.

Business interruption to cover the additional cost of hiring alternative machinery when damaged.

Management liability a comprehensive form of insurance that exists to cover allegations of wrongdoing, directed at the company as a whole or its managers, directors and officers. It can offer financial security for both businesses and individuals at the top, typically paying out for the costs of a wide variety of claims.

We understand agricultural contractors' insurance requirements and we have developed a scheme, Farmshield, which recognises the ever-growing professionalism of contracting businesses.

Our in-house liability scheme is designed for:

  • Agricultural and amenity contractors and associated trades
  • Members of the National Association of Agricultural Contractors (NAAC)

We have a team specialising in agricultural insurance, risk management and employee benefits for businesses and individuals.

We‘ll work with you to agree the type and extent of the cover you require, plus we can offer:

  • Discounted agricultural contractors' rates for NAAC members
  • An in-house claims service with access to specialist loss adjusters (Spa Crop Consultants)

For more information, please contact Scott.Henry@marshcommercial.co.uk or call 07392122166.

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