O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree, how you define the festive season! And that season is approaching quickly, meaning Christmas tree farm owners, producers, and growers are getting ready to harvest their trees to sell publicly.

According to Statistics Canada, the 2021 Census of Agriculture states that 1,364 farms grow Christmas trees for sale. Moreover, StatsCan says there are 1,895 nursery and tree production businesses that grow Christmas trees, and Canadian Christmas tree producers earned over $163 million in 2022.

Although Christmas trees are becoming more scarce as the climate changes, prices for trees were up by an average of 10% last year, according to the Canadian Christmas Trees Association, and business continues to boom.

What insurance do Christmas tree farms need?

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At the risk of sounding like Scrooge, Christmas tree producers and growers have to contend with more than inflation and the impacts of climate change on their farms. They also face significant liability threats that could quickly upend their businesses. That’s why investing in a comprehensive business insurance policy is critical. 

What Does Christmas Tree Farm Insurance Include?

A Christmas or holiday tree farm insurance policy usually includes the following types of coverages:

General Liability Insurance

General liability insurance protects your tree farm from third-party bodily injury or property damage claims. It pays for customer injuries or damages to their property that occur on your farm. For instance, if you welcome customers onto your property to cut down a tree, and a child falls and is hurt while running about on your property and needs medical attention.

Commercial Property Insurance

Commercial property insurance protects your business property and contents from water damage, fire, natural disasters, vandalism and theft. 

Product Liability Insurance

If a customer claims the tree they bought from you caused them physical harm, such as an allergic reaction to a tree they purchased from you, or if a product you grow, manufacture, distribute and sell causes third-party property damage, product liability insurance is designed to pay for the damages your customer suffers. Some general liability insurance policies include product liability coverage. It can be added to your policy if not.

Tools and Equipment Insurance

From transportable hand and power tools to heavy equipment, like a backhoe or tractor, can be protected by tools and equipment insurance. It covers insurable losses to your tools and equipment because of fire, flood, theft, and vandalism.

Commercial Auto Insurance

The business and farm vehicles you use to harvest and transport cut trees to market for sale require commercial auto insurance. A private-passenger car insurance policy is not designed to cover damages to vehicles used for business purposes.

Cyber Liability Insurance

Cyber liability insurance is vital if your holiday tree farm has a website, a point-of-sale (POS) system, or uses email and social media networks for business. It can help you recover from a cyber-attack or data breach that exposes your and your customers’ confidential information if compromised or stolen.

There may be other coverages your customized policy needs. Speak to a licensed Zensurance broker if you have questions about what your policy should contain and what coverage limits and insurance deductibles you should choose.

Does Christmas Tree Farm Insurance Cover Pop-Up Stands?

It’s not uncommon for Christmas tree farm owners to set up temporary pop-up stands in parking lots outside big box retail stores, in empty lots in cities with a high volume of traffic, or at outdoor community markets.

Some insurance policies may include extensions or endorsements for temporary or seasonal operations like pop-up stands, while others may require a separate policy. Your Zensurance broker can advise you on how to ensure you’re adequately covered to sell holiday trees at a temporary location.

How Can Holiday Tree Farms Mitigate Their Liability Risks?

You want to create a safe environment for customers and visitors to your holiday tree farm. Keeping your insurance premium low and preventing accidents and injuries from occurring on your farm means taking preventative action. Here are a few ways to do that:

  • Install signage: Post signs with instructions for visitors that include warnings and safety guidelines throughout your farm.
  • Provide adequate lighting: Have sufficient lighting in place to improve visibility.
  • Maintain safe walkways and paths: Keep walkways and pathways customers use clear of debris, snow, and ice to prevent slips, trips, and falls.
  • Perform tree maintenance: Inspect your trees regularly and remove hazardous branches.
  • Set up a cutting area: Designate an area for cutting trees with the right tools and safety measures. If you permit customers to cut their trees, clearly communicate the safety guidelines, including instructions for handling saws.
  • Assist your customers: Prevent injuries and accidents by helping your customers select, cut, and transport trees.
  • Monitor the weather: Wintry weather can hit suddenly. Keep an eye on your local forecast and be ready to close your farm in inclement weather.
  • Conduct traffic control: If you provide parking on or near your farm, implement organized parking arrangements to prevent accidents.

How to Get Low-Cost Christmas Tree Farm Insurance Quickly

Getting the business insurance your Christmas tree farm needs quickly is easy through Zensurance.

Fill out our online application for a free quote. Our knowledgeable brokers will shop our partner network of over 50 insurance providers to find the low-cost policy you need and tailor it to suit your business’s requirements.

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About the Author: Alexandria Anthony

Alexandria Anthony is the Team Lead, Property & Hospitality, at Zensurance.