It may be scary to explore a career in agriculture, especially if you have no prior experience in the field. However, do not let this stop you from pursuing your interest. There are many options for getting into agriculture with the wide range of work opportunities within the industry. With this variety of options, everyone can get involved in agriculture, from skilled workers to college graduates.
So, if you find yourself in an agricultural job without an agricultural background, here’s some tips to kickstart your agricultural knowledge.
RESEARCH IS KEY.
With the numerous options in agriculture, those considering a career in agriculture should research the best field of agriculture for them. After deciding on pursuing a career in ag it is great to network and develop those connections. Career fairs, internships, networking on professional social media, and job shadowing are good places to start. Research is one of the best ways for those with or without an agricultural background to gain experience and knowledge.
AGRICULTURE IS MORE THAN FARMING.
The most common misunderstanding about agriculture is that it requires 600 acres of land or 200 head of cattle to be classified as agriculture. This is not the case. Most jobs available are not traditional farm positions. There are a wide variety of career opportunities in agriculture, food and natural resources. You can become a biochemist, a public relations professional, a real estate agent, a lawyer, a drone tech, a salesperson, or a hydrologist.
If you want to work in agriculture you don’t have to acquire property, livestock, machinery, etc. to enjoy that part of the industry. For example, you could work for an agricultural firm, with a traditional office job, and still be classified as an agricultural professional.
GET MORE FROM YOUR EDUCATION
The variety of options available in agriculture permit post-secondary graduates to receive greater value from their education. Those who pursue a business degree, such as marketing, supply chain management, accounting or management information systems, to mention a few, have the opportunity to work for a variety of businesses, including those in the agriculture sector.
The true added value of working in agriculture, food and natural resources is that every single employee in this field is working to feed, clothe and fuel our world. Not many people work full time and believe they are making a positive impact on the world, agriculture, on the other hand, does make a difference and maximizes the effort put into your education.
AGRICULTURE IS BIG BUSINESS
It takes many hands to run a business, and an agriculture business is no different. Employees are needed to work on all elements of the organization and in numerous positions. Look at technology as an example, as technology advances, agriculture practices are continually shifting and employees are in demand.
Agriculture is so diversified that there are opportunities for everyone. This also allows individuals who do not have exposure to agriculture to be able to fill these open positions. The worldwide agricultural industry’s critical nature contributed to its stability and robust hiring for 2021.
EXPERIENCE MAY BE NEEDED
While many agricultural companies like their employees to have some form of agricultural experience, this usually only applies to specific positions. It is not needed, but highly encouraged, to network with those in the sector that you are interested in and develop at least some understanding of the industry. Having some basic knowledge and understanding will improve your chances of acquiring the position you desire. Researching different sectors might also give you some insight into how much it takes to farm 600 acres of land or keep 200 head of cattle healthy and profitable.
WHERE TO GAIN EXPERIENCE
There are several opportunities to gain agricultural experience, for example, job shadowing, internships, and career fairs. To help you gain experience some high schools, and post-secondary institutions offer agricultural programs to broaden your knowledge base.
Planting the seed now is the best approach to becoming involved in agriculture. Begin your investigation into what aspect of agriculture piques your interest. Because of the industry’s size, there is something for everyone. It’s always a good idea to leave the door open to fresh possibilities since you never know where a tiny little seed will lead you.