Protecting Your Flock: The Ultimate Guide to Poultry Farm Insurance

Robby Olvey
February 13, 2024
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Types of Insurance Needed for Poultry Farms

Protecting your poultry farm requires several types of insurance coverage:

  • Property insurance covers damage to your buildings, equipment, vehicles, and other physical assets. This protects against risks like fire, storms, vandalism and more. Make sure your policy has sufficient coverage limits for rebuilding barns, replacing equipment, and covering small items.
  • Liability insurance protects you in case someone is injured on your property or you are accused of causing damage. It covers legal defense costs and court judgements. This is crucial protection given the hazards of a farm environment.
  • Business interruption insurance replaces income lost due to covered events that shut down operations, like natural disasters, equipment breakdowns or utility interruptions. This protects your revenue stream while you recover.
  • Worker's compensation insurance covers medical care and lost wages for employees injured on the job. This is required in most states. Make sure policies comply with regulations.

Our insurance agent can help determine the precise coverage needed for your poultry houses, processing equipment, vehicles and other farm assets based on their value. Your liability risks depend partly on whether you have public visitors. Discuss your situation with us here at Martin Agency to get a quote for customized protection.

What Does Poultry Farm Insurance Cover?

Poultry farm insurance provides essential protection for your farm's buildings, equipment, livestock and income. Typical coverages include:

Property damage from events like fires, storms and theft. This covers damage to your barns, coops, specialized equipment and supplies. Replacing these structures and assets can cost hundreds of thousands, so property insurance is critical.

Liability insurance if someone is injured on your farm or allegations of animal cruelty are made. Lawsuits are unfortunately common for farms. Liability coverage helps pay legal fees and settlements.

Loss of income if disaster or disease forces you to halt operations. Business interruption insurance replaces income to keep your farm afloat.

Mortality insurance to cover birds lost to illness or natural causes. It can be devastating to lose flocks, so mortality coverage provides vital compensation.

Workers' compensation if employees are injured on the job. In most states this coverage is legally required.

Poultry farm insurance bundles these coverages so you're fully protected. Every farm has unique risks, so talk to an agent about additional options to cover hatcheries, transportation, egg production and more.

Cost of Poultry Farm Insurance

The cost of poultry farm insurance can vary significantly based on the size and location of your operation, specific risk factors, and coverage options you select. However, most policies range from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars per year.

According to average annual premiums for poultry farm insurance :

  • $300 to $1,000 for small hobby farms with less than 250 birds
  • $1,000 to $5,000 for mid-sized family farms with 250 to 2,500 birds
  • Over $5,000 for large commercial operations with over 2,500 birds

Premiums are generally higher in regions more prone to natural disasters like hurricanes, flooding or wildfires. They also increase for poultry farms with higher liability risks due to visitors, additional structures like retail shops, or proximity to neighbors.

You may be able to reduce your poultry farm insurance costs by taking measures to minimize risks like:

  • Installing fire alarms and lightning rods
  • Building secure enclosures for your flock
  • Excluding public access to hazardous areas
  • Completing worker safety and biosecurity training
  • Maintaining detailed inventory records

Bundling your poultry farm policy with other insurance like auto, equipment or worker's compensation can also help lower premiums. Talk to an agent about discounts and ways to optimize your coverage.

Key Factors that Determine Cost

The cost of your poultry farm insurance policy will depend on several important factors related to your specific operation. Insurance companies carefully evaluate these variables to determine your level of risk and calculate appropriate premiums. Some of the key factors that go into determining your insurance rates include:

  • Location - Where your farm is located and the associated weather risks play a big role. Farms prone to more extreme weather like hail, floods, snowstorms or wildfires will typically have higher premiums to cover the increased chance of claims.
  • Number and value of buildings/equipment - The total value of your insured assets like barns, processing facilities, vehicles and equipment is factored in. More buildings and higher value equipment mean higher potential for claims, driving up your costs.
  • Risk management - Companies will evaluate steps you've taken to minimize risks, like installing storm shelters or lightning rods, having strict biosecurity protocols, and maintaining fire prevention systems. Effective risk management will lower your premiums.
  • Claim history - Past insurance claims on your farm will often increase your rates, as it indicates higher risk. Multiple claims in a short period will likely cause significant premium hikes.
  • Bird mortality rates - Unusually high mortality rates raise concerns about risks like disease or mismanagement. Higher than average mortality may point to issues that could lead to future claims.

Business Insurance Needs for Poultry Farms

Operating a poultry farm involves various risks and liabilities. That's why it's crucial to have the right business insurance coverage in place. Here are some of the key policies poultry farm owners need:

General Liability Insurance

This covers any third party bodily injury or property damage that occurs on your farm premises. For example, if a visitor slips and falls in your poultry barn, general liability insurance can pay for their medical bills and protect you from a lawsuit. Make sure your policy has sufficient limits.

Property Insurance

This insures the physical assets of your farm against damage or loss. This includes buildings like chicken coops, equipment like incubators, and livestock like your chickens, ducks or other birds. Peril coverage often includes fire, windstorms, hail, lightning and more.

Commercial Auto Insurance

If you have any vehicles that are used for farm operations, you'll need commercial auto insurance. This covers liability if one of your employees gets in an at-fault accident while delivering eggs, feed or poultry supplies.

Workers' Compensation

Almost every state requires you to carry workers' comp if you have any employees. This covers lost wages and medical treatment if a worker is injured on the job. Work comp also protects you from employee lawsuits.

Having the proper business insurance provides crucial protection for your farm assets and income. Consult with a qualified insurance agent to make sure you have adequate coverage.

poultry farm risks

Common Risks for Poultry Farms

Poultry farms face a variety of risks that can lead to costly damages and losses. Being aware of these potential threats is the first step to protecting your farm through proper insurance coverage. Some of the most common risks include:

Disease Outbreaks

Diseases can spread rapidly through a flock, leading to high mortality rates that drastically impact your income and ability to run your farm. Avian influenza, Salmonella, infectious bronchitis, and parasites are just a few of the diseases that can affect poultry. Having coverage for animal mortality can provide vital financial protection.

Natural Disasters

Storms, floods, fires, and other natural disasters can destroy chicken coops, barns, equipment, and other farm property in the blink of an eye. Property insurance and business interruption insurance help pay for rebuilding and income loss in the event your operation is affected by severe weather or other events beyond your control.

Power Outages

Chickens rely on electrical systems to power fans, lighting, and climate control in coops. If the power goes out for an extended period, it threatens the health and survival of your flock. Backup generators and insurance for spoiled product can help mitigate losses from power disruptions.


Feed, equipment, livestock, and eggs can all be targeted by thieves looking to make a profit. Theft insurance covers your property against burglary, robbery, and other crimes that occur on your farm.


Workers' compensation insurance provides medical and disability benefits for employees injured on the job. Premises liability coverage protects you in the event a visitor is injured on your property and files a lawsuit. Both types of insurance are crucial for managing risk on your farm.

Ways to Lower Insurance Costs

There are several ways poultry farm owners can reduce their insurance premiums. One effective strategy is installing security systems like surveillance cameras, motion-activated lights, and alarms. This enhances security and reduces the risk of theft claims. Regularly improving biosecurity measures is also key. Doing walkthroughs to check for breaches, training staff on protocols, and restricting access can lower biohazard risks.

Increasing overall safety can also lead to discounts. Fix hazards, store chemicals securely, and enforce protective policies to avoid accidents and injuries. Having a clean claim history without frequent, severe or fraudulent claims will also keep premiums low. Maintaining detailed records of mortality events helps dispute questionable claims. Being proactive about risk management demonstrates you operate a lower-risk farm.

Government Programs for Poultry Farms

Poultry producers may be eligible for government programs to help manage risks and recover from disasters. Two key government agencies offer programs for poultry farms:

USDA Risk Management Agency

The USDA Risk Management Agency (RMA) administers crop insurance and risk management programs. Specific programs available for poultry producers include:

  • Livestock Gross Margin Insurance for Swine and Poultry (LGM) - protects against loss of gross margin on swine or poultry. Gross margin is the market value of animals minus feed costs.
  • Livestock Risk Protection Insurance (LRP) - insures against declining market prices for poultry. Coverage prices and rates are set daily.
  • Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) - provides coverage for losses and damage to poultry and eggs. Available for "non-insurable" poultry types.

USDA Farm Service Agency

The USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) provides disaster assistance programs to help producers recover from natural disasters like floods, severe storms, and disease outbreaks:

  • Livestock Indemnity Program - offers payments to poultry producers for livestock deaths in excess of normal mortality caused by eligible disasters.
  • Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish - covers losses not covered by LIP, including feed losses and increased costs.

So in summary, poultry farms should look into USDA programs like LGM, LRP and NAP for risk protection, and FSA disaster programs to help recover after events like severe weather, disease or floods. These programs can be a valuable supplement to a comprehensive private insurance plan.

Get a Customized Quote

Poultry farming comes with unique risks and insurance needs. The best way to protect your operation is to get quotes tailored specifically to your situation.

Our simple form makes it easy to get a custom quote from our Martin Agency poultry farm insurance agent. No more choosing from generic, one-size-fits-all policies. Our agents simplify the process so you get the right coverage at the best price.

Don't leave your flock and livelihood vulnerable. Receive a quote on our specialized poultry farm protection as little as 24 hours.


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