Career in Agricultural Economics

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Agricultural Economics

Even though several economies around the world are largely dependent on agriculture for food, fodder, and clothing, rapid urbanization and the need to convert agricultural lands to concrete colonies have increased the burden on the sector. To overcome the issues, pursuing a career in Agricultural Economics can be fruitful. It is a multidisciplinary field that encapsulates the concepts of Business and Economics to solve the problems of the agriculture industry. With the advancement in technology, primitive agricultural practices are now being replaced with machine-powered operations. Further, the need for remodeling of the agricultural industry has led to a rapid increase in the number of jobs in the field. Thus, starting a career in Agricultural Economics can expose you to a variety of career opportunities. In this blog, we will discuss the key elements and the courses being offered in this discipline. 

Agricultural Economics: Overview

Using the principles of micro and macroeconomics, an Agricultural Economics graduate tends to solve the problems faced globally like food crisis, poor management, and low revenue generation and maximize the revenue generated from the farm-based practices. While at the micro-level, the students are familiarised with concepts like the relation between labor and capital. At the macro level, the students are taught about topics like subsidies to the farmers, cost minimization, revising of agricultural tariffs, etc. The course curriculum imparts in-depth knowledge in areas like farm resources, accounting, food crisis, inflation, climate-based economics, logistics, supply chain management, optimizing farm output, analyzing commodity-market relation, observing buying patterns, utilization of available resources and related areas. 

Also Read: Horticulture Course

Agricultural Economics Courses

A large number of universities around the world offer an array of bachelor’s and master’s courses in Agricultural Economics. Given below are some of the educational institutions and the degree programs they offer: 

University Location Course
Massey University Australia Bachelor of Agricommerce
University of Arizona USA Bachelor of Science in Agribusiness Economics and Management
University of Reading  UK MSc in Agricultural Economics 
The University of Western Australia (UWA)  Australia Master of Agricultural Economics 
University of Missouri US MS in Agricultural and Applied Economics
University of Saskatchewan  Canada M.Sc. in Agricultural Economics
Purdue University  US MS in Agricultural Economics/MBA – in Food and Agribusiness Management
University of Bonn Germany Master of Science in Agricultural and Food Economics
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences Sweden Master’s Programme in Agricultural Economics and Management

Eligibility

When applying for an Agricultural Economics Course at any university, you must meet the following minimum requirements to study:

Postgraduate Programs

  • Students should have completed their Bachelor’s degree from a recognized board.
  • The minimum score in graduation should be 60% or above. Students of the Reserved category will have a 5% relaxation.
  • On the basis of ICAR entrance Admission-For Indian Students.

Doctoral Programs

  • Students should have completed their Master’s degree from a recognized board.
  • The minimum score in masters should be 2.5/4 or 6.5/10.
  • English Language proficiency : An overall score of 6.5 IELTS Or an overall score of 83 in TOEFL

Top Colleges for Agricultural Economics:

  • Indian Agricultural Research Institute; New Delhi,
  • Anand Agricultural University; Anand,
  • National Dairy Research Institute; Karnal,
  • Punjab Agricultural University; Ludhiana,
  • Tamil Nadu Agricultural University; Coimbatore,
  • G. B. Pant University of Agriculture and Technology; Pantnagar.

Career and Job Prospects

With the advancement in food technology, the demand for domain-specific specialists has increased. Thus, a degree in Agricultural Economics can provide an array of job opportunities in various roles. From government organizations to the private sector, job prospects are numerous. Given below are some of the most sought after work profiles in this field:

Agribusiness Consultant: as an agribusiness consultant you will be working closely with the farmers and landowners. You will also be required to use your technical and theoretical knowledge in helping them frame a successful agricultural model capable of generating sufficient income and employment. Apart from this, expanding their businesses and educating them on taking benefits from government-sponsored schemes and loans will also be your primary responsibility. 

Agriculture Development Officer: The primary responsibilities of an Agriculture Development Officer will be to devise plans and strategies to help develop the agriculture sector and increase the overall productivity in the area. Ensuring that the resources are in abundance and are evenly distributed among the farmers would also be part of your job. 

Agricultural Commodities Trader: Another popular work profile of an Agricultural Economics graduate is that of the commodities trader. If the stock market is your forte, then you might find this position very fascinating. In this role, you will be required to procure and trade in raw materials

Agricultural Appraiser: The unique work pattern of an Agricultural Appraiser makes it an ideal career for many students with degrees in Agricultural Economics. The job requires you to assess the properties including farming land, equipment, and other assets when the farmer is buying, selling, or renting them. 

Agricultural Loan Officer: The farmers often need loans to increase the farming potential of their land or to upgrade their equipment. As an Agricultural Loan Officer, you will be working in the banking sector set up for helping the farmers in getting suitable loans as per their requirements. 

Area of Focus in Agricultural Economics

  • Crop and animal health 
  • Weather effect 
  • Monitoring crop prices 
  • Commodity market and fluctuations linked to it 
  • Logistics and accounting 
  • Looking at the consumer’s preferences and pattern of purchasing goods 
  • Ensuring optimal agricultural output 
  • Farm credit 

Top Skills for Agricultural Economics

  • Analytical Skills
  • Accuracy
  • Judgment and decision making
  • Team spirit
  • USDA 
  • Food Assistance Program 
  • Financial Statements 
  • Economic analysis 
  • Good research 
  • Organizational skills 

How to Become an Agricultural Economist?

An Agricultural Economist is a profession that combines the fields of Agriculture and Economics. As such, it primarily involves monetizing agriculture and improving its profitability. To become an Agricultural Economist, the basic requirement is that a student must have a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Economics, Agriculture Business, or Agricultural Finance. After completion of their bachelor’s degree, students can further go on to pursue Master’s degrees and Doctorates for more knowledge and professional growth in the field.

An aspiring Agricultural Economist must have an interest in studying agriculture systems, climate, soil, fertilizers, modern agriculture techniques, the financial aspect of productivity improvement as well as production loss etc.. for a better understanding of the course curriculum. An Agricultural Economist must be good in communication skills, analysis & calculations, computer proficiency, strategy making and open to adopting the relevant sector-related developments. A professional experience certificate like an internship or field-related project work is also demanded by some employers before hiring an Agricultural Economist.

Thus, a career in Agricultural Economics opens up doors to a myriad of career prospects all over the world. If you want to study abroad in this field but are not sure about how to get started with the admission process then the experts at Leverage Edu will not only lend you a helping hand in completing the admission-related formalities but will also create an impressive resume that can help you land a job at your dream company. 

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4 comments
  1. That makes sense that farmers need consultants to improve productivity. They probably need help with knowing which acres and crops to focus on. It would be interesting to see the economic analysis of a piece of property.

  1. That makes sense that farmers need consultants to improve productivity. They probably need help with knowing which acres and crops to focus on. It would be interesting to see the economic analysis of a piece of property.

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