I can hear someone saying sarcastically, “Agriculture? Like seriously? Why on earth should I consider agriculture as a career profession? Isn’t that signing a document to become poor for life?” Just before coming into such conclusion, let us give you a brief education of a career in agriculture.

Agriculture takes care of your most important needs daily. How? Can you tell me what you had for breakfast today? Ok! Let me take a guess. Beverage with bread and egg fries? The beverage could be made with cocoa, and the bread with cassava or wheat flour. These combination are finished products meant for consumption, and gotten from raw materials which are Cocoa, cassava, wheat, egg, tomato, onion, vegetable oil.  These raw materials are available through cultivation of some plants like cocoa, cassava, wheat, onion, tomato etc. and through the rearing of chicken to lay eggs.

All products consumed by us was made through agriculture. The furniture in our homes and schools were acquired and made by using woods from tress such as Mahogany trees, oak trees, sugar pine trees etc. As we cut down the trees to meet our needs, they are planted again to replace what has been lost in the forest. This is called afforestation. The branch of agriculture that takes care of this is FORESTRY.

Opium alkaloids like morphine is a substance found in opium poppy plants. These substance is used in medicine for treating deep pains and cough. An agriculturist decides to ensure that he plants opium poppy plants for this purpose.

Afghan farmers harvest opium sap from a poppy field in Surkh Rod District, of Nangarhar province near Jalalabad on May 5, 2015. Photo credit  Noorullah Shirzada/AFP/Getty Images)

You probably would like to rock some nice designer bags, shoes, belts, and clothes. There you have products like Gucci, Louboutin, Chanel, Oxford Clarks, Atmosphere, Ralph Lauren, Next, Diesel, Mango, Puma, Nike, Adidas etc. these product you see people rock was gotten from some raw materials. If you look closely to observe what materials are bags, shoes, belts made of, you would notice most are made with leather. Where are these leathers gotten from, they are gotten from the hides and skin of animals like cattle (which is the most common), donkeys, crocodile, alligator, fishes, pig, snakes etc. Do you know that manufacturers of these products are always in search of people (agriculturists) who can supply them these raw materials in large quantity? Do you think rearing 50 of these animals would be enough to make at least 5000 bags only? Of cause not. A large number of animal needs to be reared in order to have enough supplies that can reach a large number of people. And how about getting the raw material used in making these clothes? A major raw material used for making clothes is cotton which is gotten from cotton plants. You also would need to have a cotton plantation so you can have enough supplies for the manufacturers to produce for a large number of people. The same applies to malted drinks like Maltina, Malta guiness, Amstel Malta, the manufacturers are always in need of malt from Barley plant which is a major ingredient for making malt drinks, maize plant, soya bean plant, sorghum plant, used for making cereals, groundnut seeds from groundnut plant, soyabean, used for making vegetable oil, goat milk, cow milk, used for making milk etc. there are a lots to be mentioned. This aspect of agriculture is what we call INDUSTRIAL OR COMMERCIAL FARMING.  Can you see there are a lot of opportunities and exciting things to do with having a career in agriculture?

Do you still think considering a career in agriculture is a deliberate action to become poor? You could still be pondering on why then you see some farmers’ poor. There are several reasons; one of the major reason is that these farmers may not have a proper education on this career and so no innovation, intelligence. wisdom is applied which is the key to bringing in higher yields of your work. Crop growers have been implementing techniques like recycling farm wastes and returning them to the land to save resources, this is an instance of innovation and intelligence in agriculture.

Some farmers you see poor may be laborers working on a farmland owned by somebody. They receive daily pay which is usually dictated by the farm owner. A farm laborer usually works with instructions from an agriculturist who is an expert. They have little or no intelligence about agriculture, but some usually have experience in farming, which is very useful.

By choosing to be educated in agriculture your chances of becoming poor is very slim. Considering a career in agriculture with the mindset of meeting human needs, which in turn you deal with manufacturers do you think you will be poor? Of cause not. You will be wealthy. What education does for you in this respect, is enlightenment, exposure, intelligence, gaining and knowing how to apply knowledge gained. One of the major reason you offer English as a subject in school is to help your communication (grammar) and understanding (comprehension) skills, so you can have a good relationship with your clients (the manufacturers). By going to school, you acquire knowledge on several technology used in agriculture.

Affiong Williams is an agriculture entrepreneur in Nigeria. She is the owner of the ReelFood a food company in Nigeria that snacks up fruit. That is a very good innovation. She has over 85 stores in Nigeria.

From these knowledge of agriculture you have acquired from this article. We can now define agriculture as:

the cultivation of animals and plants to meet human needs.

And it also doesn’t involve the cultivation of animals and plants only;

It encompasses the production, processing, marketing and distribution of crops and livestock products.

Agriculture is the most important enterprise in the world. It meets a wide array of human needs

Having a degree in agriculture gives you the knowledge and skills to manage agricultural businesses.

In Teen Africa Academy, we have a career development program that guides you as you make a decision on what you would like to major in your career. The academy provides guidance starting from whatever level of education you are, so you can make informed and deliberate decision, which would lead to your happiness and fulfillment. Click here to sign up to our career development program and to speak to a career counselor today.


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