US agrifood co-op extends healthcare plan to more farmers

‘The expansion of our Farmer Member Health Care Plan is something we take immense pride in’

US agrifood co-op Land O’Lakes has announced the expansion of its Co-operative Farmer Member Health Plan to the state of Kansas.

This is the second expansion for the self-insured health plan, set up to help farmers in the Land O’Lakes co-op network obtain more affordable health care.

This health plan already offers coverage to farmers of participating co-ops and individual farmers in Minnesota and Nebraska. It will extend to Kansas for the 2020 plan year.

Land O’Lakes developed a group health plan for individual farmers within its network in 2018. In its pilot year, through a partnership with Gravie, a Minneapolis-based benefits marketplace, the Farmer Member Health Plan was offered to 12 Minnesota-based Land O’Lakes co-ops as well as to its individual farmer members.

In 2019, the plan expanded into Nebraska, making more than 50,000 farmers in the states of Minnesota and Nebraska eligible for enrolment in the plan. With the expansion into Kansas, more than 60 co-operatives and their farmers are now eligible.

Beth Ford, president and CEO, Land O’Lakes, said: “We’re continuously looking for new ways to support and advocate for our members. Our farmers are dealing with many challenging issues in today’s agriculture environment – finding affordable health care options for their families shouldn’t be one of them.”

Pam Grove, senior director of benefits at Land O’Lakes, said: “The expansion of our Farmer Member Health Care Plan is something we take immense pride in, and we thank our partners in the Kansas legislature for making this possible.”

Land O’Lakes is working to expand this offering to additional states and identify ways in which to grow this new solution for its member producers and farmers within its cooperative system.