In the early days of the glyphosate and Roundup Ready crops revolution, some worried that the wrong field would get sprayed and the crop would die. And it does happen – cases are reported every year where someone, maybe a farmer but often a custom applicator, sprays a field with the wrong material.
The latest incident has already been reported this spring. Apparently a field of wheat was to be sprayed by a custom applicator with a fungicide to control potential diseases. The farmer thought he had a good crop of wheat and wanted to go for top yield. Improving wheat yields to new levels typically requires spraying a fungicide during this time of year.
The only problem this time is that instead of fungicide, the custom applicator apparently added glyphosate to the tank. Either he thought the farmer wanted to burn down the wheat as a cover crop, or he simply made an honest mistake and put the wrong material in the spray tank. A large field was totally destroyed because whatever was sprayed killed the wheat.
A local crop insurance adjustor who works for a company providing federally backed crop insurance for farmers says that in this case crop insurance would not pay for the failed crop. Since it's due to an action outside of coverage, it will be up to the company that the custom applicator worked for and the farmer to work out fair compensation.
The only thing Federal crop insurance can do is count the acres as planted to wheat so that the farmer can maintain his proper history of planted acres of wheat. That will help in future years when determining payment for insurance purposes.