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Alta. to launch cattle price insurance

Alberta’s farm financing agency plans to roll out a first-in-Canada price insurance plan for the province’s cattle producers as early as mid-2009.

Agriculture Financial Services Corp. (AFSC), which already runs the province’s crop insurance programs, said Alberta beef producers will be the first among the province’s livestock sectors to access such insurance. “This type of insurance doesn’t currently exist in Canada and will be another tool our producers can use to help protect them from fluctuating cattle prices,” Agriculture Minister George Groeneveld said in a release Wednesday.

The cattle price insurance program, or CPIP, is billed as “an Alberta-made livestock insurance product tailored to provide price protection for Alberta cattle producers.”

CPIP is expected to provide protection against drops in Alberta beef prices over a defined time period. Premiums would vary by policy length and by the desired level of coverage. The insurance will be a voluntary, producer-funded program and will provide “timely” claim payments, the province said.

AFSC said it would target mid-2009 to launch a CPIP product for fed cattle. The agency added it’s in the “design stages” of a program for calves and yearlings.

CPIP was developed through a partnership with the federal and provincial governments and the Alberta Beef Producers, the province said.

The province added that its Livestock and Meat Agency (ALMA) was “instrumental in supporting this initiative” and will work “closely” with AFSC and the industry over the next two years to increase awareness of CPIP.

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