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By Melissa Clark, Agriculture in the Classroom Canada
Did you know that Canada has over 158.7 million acres of farmland belonging to 193,492 farm operators? To put it into perspective, that’s 120,227,273 football fields! The agri-food sector makes up 12% of Canadian employment; more than 2.1 million Canadians are employed by the agriculture industry which equals about one in every eight jobs.
Enough numbers, here are five reasons why agriculture is the industry to work in:
1. YOU CAN BE PART OF THE INDUSTRY THAT FEEDS THE WORLD.
Most people eat at least three times a day, but the majority of those people don’t produce the food they eat. According to the United Nations, by the year 2050, the population of our world will be more than 9 billion. That’s an additional 2 billion mouths to feed, which means we need more people working in the research and production of food.
“You get to be a part of feeding the world, making a better tomorrow, and being an innovator! Each day brings a new challenge or something to overcome that will better the population of the world. There are careers and opportunities for everyone in the industry” (Carlene Dmytriw: Summer Intern BASF, recent BScAg Graduate from the University of Manitoba).
2. YOU’LL ALWAYS HAVE NEW OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH.
Do you worry about getting bored, or committing to the same career for the rest of your life? Working in agriculture is so much more than farm operators and people who raise livestock (cows, sows and plows). Agriculture provides diverse job opportunities in a multitude of different areas. Have you ever thought of an agricultural career as marketing and communications? How about an agriculture education specialist, or a food engineer? Whether you want to work on or off the farm, there are a variety of jobs that will suit your skills and abilities.
“The job opportunities in agriculture are enormous compared to other industries. You can really get a good foot in the door straight out of university” (Cam Ross, current Environmental Studies Student at the University of Manitoba).
3. YOU CAN BE A LEADER IN TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION.
Are you tech savvy? Now, more than ever, the industry of agriculture is booming with technological advances that are helping to feed the growing population. Want some examples? How about agricultural robots that automate processes like harvesting, fruit picking, seeding and soil maintenance? Imagine growing food in skyscrapers using vertical farming technology. Although many of these innovations may not be viable for another 10-20 years, they are examples of what your future career might look like.
“Being involved in agriculture, I find it exciting how rapidly technology has grown in our industry. The advances in agricultural technology have provided producers with the knowledge about their food that can help increase production and sustainability for the generations to come” (Gordie Ross: Product Excellence Summer Intern Bayer, recent BScAg Graduate from the University of Manitoba).
4. YOU CAN SURROUND YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE PASSIONATE ABOUT WHAT THEY DO.
The industry of agriculture is booming with people sharing their agriculture proud stories. Producers and industry partners from all over Canada are teaming up to join the conversation about Canadian agriculture and its food story. Public trust is at the core of agriculture, and it is now integral for those in the industry to become ‘agvocates’ and share their experiences to help people understand where their food comes from and how they are working hard to provide food to feed the world.
“Agriculture is such a passionate, exciting and evolving industry to be in! There’s always new genetics, new cropping methods, new ideas on how we can raise livestock. It’s all about the main goal of feeding a growing population as sustainably as possible!” (Rachael Verwey, current Agriculture student majoring in Animal Science and working with Co-op in their Excellence in Agriculture Program).
5. YOU CAN BE EXCITED FOR THE UNKNOWN.
The future of Canadian agriculture is bright and with innovative technologies that improve best practices, the career opportunities that are available for graduates today are numerous. Food will always be a resource in demand, and as long as the people inhabiting earth require food to survive, agriculture will thrive! There will always be new challenges to address. Will you create the next superfood? Or solve an environmental issue related to climate change or water scarcity?
“There will be jobs coming available in agriculture over the next ten years that don’t even EXIST yet! That’s how fast this industry is growing!” (Johanne Ross; Executive Director; Agriculture in the Classroom-Canada).
Agriculture in the Classroom Canada (AITC-C) is a not for profit organization, operating across the country delivering accurate, balanced and current, curriculum-linked resources on Canada’s agriculture and food industry.
The mission of AITC-C is to engage students and educators to enhance their knowledge, understanding, and appreciation of agriculture and food.
Learn more and access great information about careers in agriculture and food at www.aitc-canada.ca.