The agricultural sector lacks the required talent to advance in technology, sustainability, urbanization, and precision farming. This is due to overall urbanization, a smaller young population from farming backgrounds, and the aging workforce. The shortage has, in turn, created in-demand jobs in agriculture that are worth pursuing.
So, if you have an interest in the sector, it is best to pursue progressive careers that pay well. You have to talk to people in the industry and check job board postings or the statistics on agriculture careers in high demand posted online for informed decision-making.
But we’ve got you covered. Below we cover 10 agriculture jobs in high demand to consider.
What are the high-demand jobs in agriculture?
Whether you have a degree in agriculture or not, there are high-demand jobs that lead to a successful career. These jobs include;
1. Farm manager
Farms have doubled over the last 30 years, and farmers need a helping hand to run their operations. Likewise, corporate farms need managers to improve their output. As a result, there is increased demand for farm managers to oversee the operations and make sound business decisions.
Farm managers may focus on crop, dairy, or animal production, although one might be in charge of all. Their work is to organize farm administration, implement strategies for maximum output, manage the budget, bring together work machinery, and manage staff and any associated businesses.
You need a degree in agriculture or a related subject to pursue this career. However, some employers may give you an opportunity based on hands-on farming experience without much regard for academic qualifications.
The average annual pay for farm managers in the US is $51,200 and the top-paid managers earn more than $81,000 a year.
2. Operations manager
Every big farm needs an operation manager to oversee the daily running of agricultural establishments such as greenhouses, nurseries, and ranches, among others. Their work includes supervising and leading other employees in fertilizing, planting, harvesting, and transporting agricultural products.
The position requires individuals who love challenges, have problem-solving skills, are well-organized, and have the ability to manage and lead a team. One should also have a bachelor’s degree in management or other related subjects.
The median annual salary for operations managers in the US is $70,000. It is one of the highest-paying agricultural jobs in the US, with the top earners getting more than $105,000 a year.
3. Pest/disease control specialist
Crops and animal farms are constantly affected by pests and diseases, and therefore they need a specialist to address the issues. Some farmers may hire a specialist on contractual terms to help control the pest and diseases during key times of the year, whereas large farms and corporates may need full-time experts to handle the issues.
Even farmers who desire to do the job themselves might not be able to since some agricultural products require licensed contractors to handle them. For these reasons, there is an increasing demand for pest/disease control specialists.
You will need a degree in agriculture, biology, or other related fields to apply for the position. Hand-on experience is definitely a plus.
The average annual salary for pest/disease control specialists in the United States is $45,989 and the highest-paid earn more than $86,000 a year.
4. Agricultural retail sales officers
Small retailers, cooperatives, and firms engaged in agribusiness always need retail sales officers to sell their products to farmers. Retail sales officers deal with products such as feeds, seeds, crop and nutrition protection, equipment, and other agricultural techniques.
The position is open to individuals with vast knowledge of agricultural products and a degree in any field. One should also have the ability to interact with people effortlessly and be willing to work outdoors in rural areas, as most positions are rural-based.
The average annual pay for agricultural retail sales reps in the US is $90,792 with the highest-paid getting more than $114,000 a year.
Agronomists are experts in crop production who research and recommend new and best methods of increasing farm yields. This is one of the agriculture jobs in high demand as these experts are needed in fertilizer and chemical companies, seed companies, and large farming corporations.
The agronomist spends most of their time in the lab analyzing crop data to come up with improved generation for higher output. They are always thinking of the best ways to protect crops from pests, seeds, and harsh environmental elements.
After concluding their research, they present the finding to farmers to help them improve their harvest. They also advise organizations dealing with agricultural products on the best products that will help in increasing farm output.
To be an agronomist, you need a degree in a relevant subject such as ecology, biology, and agriculture.
The average annual income for agronomists in the US is $60,800 with the potential to earn as high as $90,000 a year.
6. Agricultural accountant/finance officers
The agricultural sector has unique accounting and taxing principles that require expert agricultural accountants. Therefore, there is a demand for finance officers to work as relationship managers, loan analysts, or loan officers in farm lending institutions. Also, agribusinesses hire them to work as their credit managers, bookkeepers, or chief financial officers (CFOs).
The position requires individuals with a degree in agribusiness, business administration, or accounting with good knowledge of agricultural tax and accounting principles.
The median annual pay for agricultural accountants in the US is $63,610 and you can earn as high as $98,000 a year.
7. Agriculture technician
Agriculture technician analyzes food and agricultural product to ensure they meet the required quality. Therefore, they are needed by NASS, USDA, agricultural extension services, and other independent agribusiness research and development organizations.
Their work involves preparing samples, supervising pest and weed control, examining specimens to check on any issues, and some are in charge of machine operations.
If you want to pursue a career as an agricultural technician, you need an advanced degree in an agricultural-related field and an interest in research-type jobs.
The average annual pay for agricultural technicians in the US is $44,850 and the highest-paid earn more than $62,200 a year.
Apart from being an in-demand agricultural job, being a veterinarian is one of the best-paying animal jobs in the United States – you can earn as high as $165,000 a year.
Veterinarians are in charge of vaccination, medical test and treatment, surgery, and fertilization of animals. They provide medical care and monitor animals’ health in ranches and animal farms.
To be a veterinarian, you need a degree in biological sciences and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM). You should also have a state license to practice veterinary medicine.
The average annual salary for veterinarians in the US is $109,920, making it one of the best-paying in-demand jobs in agriculture.
Related: 15 Highest-Paying Veterinary Specialties 
9. Marketing specialists
Every niche in the agricultural sector requires marketing specialists to market products for the target business and farmers. Marketers are in demand in the agricultural industry as new seeds, feed, production methods, and technologies are being rolled out. Farmers also require marketers to move their products to consumers.
Agricultural marketers should be well-versed in farm products and possess outstanding communication and interpersonal skills. A degree in marketing is a prerequisite to succeed in the career.
The marketing specialists earn an average annual salary of $54,100 with the potential to earn more than $74,000 a year.
Hydrologists are experts who study the water supply around the planet. They seek to understand the effects of environmental factors and agricultural activities on the quality and quantity of water.
These scientists play an important role in the agricultural industry as they research and recommend ways of minimizing pollution and erosion.
To pursue this career, you should have a master’s degree in engineering, geoscience, or earth science specializing in hydrology.
The mean annual pay for hydrologists in the US is $94,780. The highest-paid experts in this field earn more than $135,000 a year, which makes it one of the best-paying in-demand jobs in agriculture in the US.
FAQs about in-demand jobs in agriculture
Let’s now have a look at a few questions about high-demand jobs in agriculture in the United States.
Which job is best in agriculture?
The agriculture industry is one of the fastest-growing sectors in any economy. And the following are some of the best and most promising jobs in agriculture worth pursuing:
- Agricultural engineer
- Farm manager
- Agricultural economists
- Commercial horticulturalists
- Conservation planner
- Soil and plant scientists
- Agricultural salesperson
Does the agriculture field have high-paying jobs?
Agriculture is an exceptionally adaptable field that offers well-paying opportunities with a promising job outlook. Some of the high-paying jobs in the agricultural field include:
|Job||Median annual salary|
|Agricultural operations manager||$70,000|
Why is there a huge demand for professionals in the field of agriculture?
The agricultural sector continues to grow, yet many people are leaving the industry for white-collar jobs. This has created a shortage of talented workforce, leading to a huge demand for professionals.
Again, people are becoming more aware of what they consume, increasing demand for quality and quantity of food and other agricultural products. Therefore, there is a need for continuous technological innovation, research, and development, which require professionals to steer the various departments involved.
Lastly, there is a continuous need for experts to tackle emerging issues such as diseases, pests, water shortage, and global warming for sustainable agriculture.
Why is agriculture a great industry to work in?
The agricultural industry goes beyond ordinary farming, crop, and livestock production, which makes it a great sector to work in. A few reasons why you should consider a career in agriculture include:
- Agriculture offers huge career opportunities
- It is an evolving sector which means opportunities for career growth
- The pay is good
- People need agriculture to survive, which contributes to job opportunities and salary growth
- There is an opportunity to work outdoors
- It doesn’t necessarily need you to have a farming background
- You have an opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives and the world around you.
Why are youths not taking agriculture as a profession?
Youths are not taking up agriculture as a profession due to the following reasons:
- They perceive it as non-lucrative
- Agriculture is seen as socially non-prestigious
- Youths have been brought up with the notion that agriculture is an uncomfortable career
- The job is physically demanding
- Desire to live in urban areas where there are minimum agricultural activities
Agriculture is a growing field, yet the youths are shunning careers in the industry. This has led to high demand for talent in agricultural sectors. So, if you have a passion for agriculture, pursue an agricultural career for assured job growth and a good salary.