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Leveraging Your Farming Operation with A Trusted Team

How Western Agency's Approach to Agricultural Insurance is Helping Farmers in North Dakota Achieve More

As the region’s largest independent insurance agency, the team at Western Agency prides themselves in great customer service and in doing the “heavy lifting” so their clients can get back to work, having peace of mind in knowing they’re in good hands.

“We are a proactive agency—we strive to stay ahead of opportunities and roadblocks for our clients,” CEO Ryon Boen said. “Whether that’s potential claim situations, new farm programs or annual changes to crop insurance, we are leveraging our proactive approach to ensure our clients are well-positioned to benefit.”

Since 1976, Western Agency has made serving farmers and ranchers across the Dakotas their ultimate mission. Their team of experts are here to provide expert tips and clear up misconceptions surrounding hail coverage and multi-peril crop insurance.

For many farmers, it can be hard to place trust in someone else to help navigate the financial and insurance side of their farming operation. Not only that, but it’s also hard to trust that those helping can provide a top-tier experience while having your best interest in mind. Western Agency is providing exactly that with a sort of “kitchen-table conversation” approach that is based on more personable and approachable conversations and reassuring clients that the team at Western Agency has their backs.

“We are constantly pushing ourselves to be leaders in our space,” CEO Ryon Boen said. “Training and educating ourselves with changes and new perspectives can really benefit the grower on multi-peril crop insurance, crop hail, and more. We take a team approach by having multiple sets of eyes on each policy which helps evaluate it in greater depth.”

“In the farm space, we recognize that farms are always evolving with equipment changes, use changes, and risk changes,” VP of Farm Operations Jackie Larson said. “We work to be welcomed to the table so that we can hear what each farm family’s goals are, allowing us to prepare and adapt their policies to match.”

Meet the team at Western Agency

Ryon Boen


Jackie Larson
VP Farm Operations

Dallas Varty
Sales Director

Brian Erickson
Crop Insurance Agent

Nikki Stiegelmeier
Crop Insurance Agent

Shan Tonneson
Crop Insurance Agent

Ryan Skarphol
Crop Insurance Agent

Trevor Forest
Crop Insurance Agent

A Thorough & Organized Approach

The team at Western Agency pride themselves on being thorough and organized in every step of the process. Especially for new clients who have never worked with them before, the Western Agency process is really what sets them apart from other agencies. And for those wondering what they can expect when working with Western Agency, Sales Director Dallas Varty explains, “By using proprietary data and formulas, we are able to make sure the client has as much information as possible to make an informed decision for their operation. We have multiple checkpoints throughout our process during the crop year which helps us in being proactive on any changes the grower may see throughout the year—which in turn allows our clients to adjust accordingly and make the most profitable decision.”

“People who haven’t worked with us in the past are occasionally surprised by the various ways we gather, organize, and display information for them, which helps provide peace of mind.” Larson said.

Debunking 5 Common Misconceptions About MCPI/Hail

1. Your agent doesn’t really matter, it’s all the same product

While this may be half true (it’s all the same product), it’s what you do and can do with the product that makes a difference. Having an agent that has a deep understanding of the product gives you the advantage.

2. Every year is the same so you don’t need to analyze your insurance coverage every year

Because things like inputs, commodity prices, and weather change from year to year, It’s imperative to analyze the impacts of those and react by adjusting your insurance strategy accordingly. Our tools make those decisions easy for you to protect your operation from year to year.

3. Crop insurance and grain marketing are unrelated activities.

We understand crop insurance protects you in two ways, yield loss and price uncertainty. Marketing can protect you from the price side of things but nothing on yield. Therefore, understanding how to marry the two together can afford you protection from both sides, allowing producers to forward market without holding all of the risk and maximize profit potential during the growing season when unknowns are at their highest.

4. Risk management is not a big consideration when setting a farmer’s operation plan for the year.

In today’s economic environment, farmers should understand the current year’s break-event costs and profit potential, then work with their agent to craft a risk management plan that best suits their risk tolerance and financial needs.

5. Prior to and after March 15th, there is not much a farmer can do to enhance their crop insurance program.

Actually, there are a number of private products that allow farms to strengthen their risk management program outside of the RMA-based products. The ability to use alternative pricing floor periods and methods or even single perils production-based solutions can be very beneficial in reducing overall profit risk. These products are available throughout the year.

4 Tips When Choosing the Right MPCI/Hail Coverage

The agents at Western Agency understand that looking at all of the options and offerings for Crop Insurance coverage can be overwhelming. That’s why they have provided these key tips to consider when choosing the right coverage for you.

1. Keep an eye on break-even points and lock in profit when possible.

Understanding your break-even costs for each crop and choosing the coverage levels & options that at least meet those needs, so you don’t have to count sheep at night.

2. Work with an agent who understands how to maximize the use of options on crop insurance.

Identify profitability goals and determine if you can cover those with your insurance selections or if you need other hedging tools.

3. Protect the crop to its potential.

Select unit types that fit your ability and desire to accept or transfer risk.

4. Choose to work with agents who are making suggestions and are passionate about helping you to succeed.

Use your crop insurance to execute your marketing strategy to keep you on a path toward improving your financial position and adding value to your farming operation.

Hear why people love working with Western Agency

"Everyone has customer service, but Western Agency goes above and beyond. They work with my precision ag and bring all my acres into their program to make certifying acres with them and FSA a breeze. If you're looking for efficiency in your operations and insurance, Western Agency is the team for you."
Kim Saueressig
Saueressig Farm
"Western Agency's customer service is a painless experience because they pride themselves on relationship building. They make the meetings more like a meet-up of friends, rather than a normal business meeting. They are my go-to for ag coverage because they strive to go the extra mile in providing value. They provide proactive advice and are always looking to see what I can do to get the most out of my coverage. What they do exceptionally well is utilizing technology and using it to really show the farmers how things work. They have countless spreadsheets for every situation and they use them to help me make the right decisions for my farm."
Brian Knorr
Brian Knorr Farms
"Western Agency has provided us with outstanding coverage on our Farm and Ranch policy: buildings, cattle, vehicles, and crops—they take care of all of our needs. They recently have educated themselves on the RCIS Livestock Revenue Program which provides producers like ourselves with a great base coverage for our unborn calves, feeder cattle, and fed cattle inventories to protect our bottom line. We will continue going to Western Agency for our insurance needs because of their continued education on the products and services with an explanation that makes sense for our business. If there's a question, there's an immediate answer for us. They take pride in their performance and they do this exceptionally well! They are also very thoughtful during our busy planting, providing us with useful farm maps for easy record keeping and a great sack lunch in the field! Jackie Larson from Western Agency has helped make our decision-making on our farming operation more profitable by explaining the different coverages based on our break-evens. Not only has this improved our bottom line but it also gives us the peace of mind that we can trust our agent's knowledge in making the correct decisions."
Lee Zimmerman
Sandhills Dairy

Dedicated to investing in the community

In addition to being trusted experts in insurance for farm, agribusiness, and ranch, the team at Western Agency is dedicated in giving back to the community. They believe it’s just as important for them to contribute to the communities where they work and do business as it is to sell the right policies to their individual clients.

For Boen and his team, that means giving back and investing in valuable resources. They believe investments in things like youth, education, and community programs present some of their greatest opportunities, both as a company and as individuals.

Giving back has always been at the heart of Western Agency that, to date, they have provided nearly $2 million in the form of collegiate scholarships, sponsorships and community event support to area communities and towns.

From educators and engineers to family-owned businesses, entrepreneurs and accountants, individuals who’ve benefitted from these contributions have grown from promising young students to valuable professionals, many of whom now work and live in the Dakotas. The team at Western Agency aren’t just industry experts, they’re family

Connect with our crop insurance agents to learn how Western Agency can benefit your farming operation!

To get started with Western Agency’s outstanding service, visit or call 701.852.5383

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