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5 roles in Agribusiness & Horticulture that people want to get into

Posted by Helen McGowan on September 14, 2017

In: Career Advice, Study

The agriculture industry is changing.  New technologies, new methods and new products are making this such an exciting sector to be in.  Let’s look a few popular roles currently.

Animal Scientist
Animal scientists work with farm animals researching nutrition, growth, reproduction and genetics.  They look at how things such as feed, environmental conditions or processing methods affect the animal produce like eggs or milk.  They research these areas and share their findings with the scientific community, farmers and producers and the public.  They use the results of their research to improve products, yields and processes.  Animal scientists require an interest in science, the environment and farming animals.  They also need strong observational skills, an analytical mind and to be a good collaborator as teamwork is important.  Animal scientists usually work in research universities, for the government or private industries.  A degree in animal science or science with biology or physiology is usually required for a role in the industry.

Beekeeper
Beekeeping is hugely popular currently.  Beekeepers look after their bee colonies and hives with meticulous care.  Hives need constant attention.  Beekeepers feed bees, maintain and build hives, check the health of the colonies, move colonies, and harvest honey and beeswax from the hives.  They then store and package honey and beeswax in the special conditions required.  Beekeepers need good planning skills and a strong attention to detail.  Very importantly they need to ensure they’re not allergic to bee stings!  The work is seasonal as bees are more active in spring, summer & early autumn.  Beekeepers work largely outdoors and it is quite a physical role.  While no qualifications are required there is a VET in beekeeping available.  Beekeepers are required to register with their relevant State Department of Primary Industries.

Agribusiness Analyst
Agribusiness analysts examines trends and changes within the agricultural industry.  They use financial data to forecast future business, economic or industry conditions and changes.  Agribusiness analyst use mathematical modelling to predict possible livestock pricing, yields or disease outbreaks.  They use various ecometrics softwares and techniques to create their reports and chart data.  Agribusiness analysts need to understand and be passionate about agriculture and the environment, but also be strong mathematically and analytically.  A key part of the role is communicating their findings to farmers, financial institutions or government departments in a non-technical manner.  Agribusiness analysts work in both offices and out in the field when necessary.  A degree in agriculture, agribusiness or resource economics is usually needed to obtain a role in this occupation.

Horticultural Manager
Horticultural managers develop and grow plants, food crops or possibly turf.  They are usually involved in the production of ornamental plants or crops for plant nurseries, garden centres, wholesalers and retailers.  In some instances they work in a park or gardens such as a botanic garden, designing, managing and maintaining the plants.  Horticultural managers cultivate and develop new products, deal with suppliers and manage a skilled team of workers.  They also need to understand the commercial side of the business, have good time management and planning skills.  Time is spent between an office and on the cultivation site or garden.  The become a horticultural manager a VET in horticulture or commercial nursery production is required.

Veterinary Nurse
Veterinary nurses have to deal with all kinds of animals from kittens and pet birds to snakes and lizards.  They help to take care of the animals, collecting blood samples, administer vaccines and medication, taking x-rays and assisting in surgeries.  Veterinary nurses usually also have some administrative duties such as reception work and database and records maintenance.  Being a veterinary nurse requires a love of animals and an interest in animal welfare.  They work long hours that include evenings, weekends and public holidays and the role can by physically taxing.  Veterinary nurses deal with people in stressful and upsetting circumstances so being sympathetic and understanding is important.  A VET in veterinary nursing is required to become a veterinary nurse or alternatively a traineeship can be completed instead.
 

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