7 Jobs in Agriculture – A Fun, Fulfilling Career Path
Agriculture is a broad and exciting field.
There are many different career opportunities within this diverse line of work. It’s a great industry if you love the outdoors, working with your hands, or working with animals. Agriculture has a high impact, allowing you to make a positive difference in the community. Although agricultural jobs can be difficult at times, they are highly rewarding. There are also opportunities in the Australian agriculture industry for self-employment and that give you space from other people.
But what agriculture jobs are out there? This article will cover everything you need to know.
7 types of jobs in agriculture
1. Farm manager
When most people think of agricultural jobs, the day-to-day work of running a farm probably comes to mind. Farm managers are employed by farm owners (or may own a farm themselves) to supervise staff and make key decisions. Key responsibilities of a farm manager include:
Farm managers need to be:
You can become a farm manager without any qualifications. If you’ve grown up on a farm or close to agriculture, you may already have a lot of the skills and knowledge necessary to get started. However, courses in areas like animal science, crop science, agricultural science, and farm management are useful to boost your knowledge and expertise. Qualifications like certificates in agriculture, a Diploma of Agriculture or a Bachelor of Agriculture may suit your aspirations.
2. Farm hand
Farm hands assist farm managers and farmers with a huge range of hands-on tasks. Everything from mending fences, building structures, and taking care of crops or animals could be in your list of responsibilities. It’s a highly varied role where no two days are the same. Key responsibilities of a farm hand include:
Farm hands need to:
Although vets are typically associated with household pets like cats and dogs, you can also work with farm animals like cattle and horses. Key responsibilities for vets working in agriculture include:
Vets need to be:
Veterinarians are highly qualified. It takes between 5 to 7 years of university study to become a vet. A TAFE course or short course in animal care is a great, practical pathway to studying veterinary science at university.
Conservationists are professionals employed by governments, universities, and land councils to ensure the sustainability of agriculture. Conservationists look at the environmental and ecological impact of farming to determine if land can be used for agriculture or if it should be reserved. Key responsibilities of a conservationist include:
Conservationists need to be:
To work as a conservationist, you will need bachelor-degree level qualifications in science, environmental science, ecology, or geology. Short courses in animal care and science or TAFE courses such as the Diploma of Science can also provide a great pathway for dipping your toes in and seeing if a career in conservation is right for you.
5. Agricultural engineer
Engineers are professionals involved with inventing, designing, building, and maintaining machines, technologies, and systems. This skill set is vital to the agricultural industry. Agricultural engineers can be involved in designing and implementing waste management systems for farms in a way that’s sustainable and protects the environment.
There are also jobs for engineers in designing and implementing water management systems. Mechanical engineers are useful for the agricultural industry in maintaining, repairing, building and inventing farm machinery. The goal is to optimise yields, that is, the quantity and quality of crops harvested.
Key responsibilities of an agricultural engineer include:
Agricultural engineers need to be:
Agricultural engineers typically hold a bachelor’s degree in engineering. Postgraduate qualifications such as a master’s degree specialising in agricultural engineering may also be useful. A great pathway towards engineering can also be through a short course or TAFE courses such as the Diploma of Engineering.
6. Agribusiness professional
People working in agribusiness are specialists in the business side of farming, with a wide range of professionals falling under this umbrella. Agribusiness professionals provide financial services such as insurance or loans for farms. They also work in agricultural law in cases involving environmental regulations or land use.
Similar positions are available for agricultural accountants and lobbyists in the agriculture industry. Key responsibilities of an agribusiness professional include:
Agribusiness professionals need to have:
Salaries for agribusiness professionals will be dependent on which field you’re focusing on. Necessary qualifications will also depend on your field of focus.
To work as an agricultural lawyer or accountant for instance, you will need qualifications in law, accounting or business. Financial services specialists may benefit from qualifications in commerce. Lobbyists do not require any specific qualifications, but may benefit from a strong knowledge of agriculture, politics, or law.
Agronomists take a scientific approach to crop production. They aim to increase the quality of crops and the size of crop yields. They draw on scientific expertise in fields like biology, horticulture, chemistry, soil and plant science, earth science, and genetics to advise growers how best to optimise their crop outputs. Key responsibilities for agronomists include:
Agronomists need to be:
A bachelor-degree level qualification is required to pursue a career as an agronomist. You could study agriculture specifically, or get a more generalist degree in the sciences such as horticulture, geology, forestry, or agronomy. TAFE qualifications such as the Diploma of Science, Diploma of Agriculture, or a short course in agriculture can also give you a taste of what it’s like to study these disciplines.
There are many varied jobs in the agricultural sector which require different skill sets, qualifications, and personality traits. People who are interested in food, plants, animals, and the outdoors have a range of great agricultural career options, all of which contribute to our environmental sustainability and food security of Australia.
Are you ready to start a career in agriculture? Explore agriculture courses to take the first step to enter the field.