Agricultural Production Operations
- Develop confidence in one’s physical and mental abilities to perform work in the field of agriculture.
- Understand the importance of the agriculture industry in our nation’s economy and quality of life.
- Develop skills needed to succeed in the field of agriculture.
- Develop productive oral and written communication skills.
- Develop the ability to work effectively as an individual and in a group.
- Be familiar with potential careers in the agriculture field, and education required for each
- Be prepared to enter the workforce or higher education
Farmers and ranchers
Crop farmers and managers
Livestock, dairy, and poultry farmers
Ranchers and managers
Nursery and greenhouse managers
Aquaculture farmers and managers
Nature of Work
Agricultural production is the major activity of this industry sector and it consists of two large subsectors, animal production and crop production. Animal production includes establishments that raise livestock, such as beef cattle, poultry, sheep, and hogs; farms that employ animals to produce products, such as dairies, egg farms, and apiaries (bee farms that produce honey); and animal specialty farms, such as horse farms and aquaculture (fish farms). Crop production includes the growing of grains, such as wheat, corn, and barley; field crops, such as cotton and tobacco; vegetables and melons; fruits and nuts; and horticultural specialties, such as flowers and ornamental plants. Of course, many farms have both crops and livestock, such as those that grow their own animal feed, or have diverse enterprises.
Training and Advancement
Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations
To show competency in farm management, agricultural managers may choose to become certified. The American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers (ASFMRA) offer the Accredited Farm Manager (AFM) credential. The AFM requires 85 hours of coursework in land management and business ethics; a bachelor’s degree; 4 years of experience in farm or ranch management; and passing an exam. A complete list of requirements is available from ASFMRA.
Analytical skills. Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers must monitor and assess the quality of their land or livestock. These tasks require precision and accuracy.
Critical-thinking skills. Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers make tough decisions through sound reasoning and judgment. They determine how to improve their harvest and livestock, while reacting appropriately to external factors such as unfavorable weather or insect infestations.
Initiative. Many farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers are self-employed and must be motivated in order to maximize crop or livestock production.
Interpersonal skills. Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers supervise laborers and other workers, so effective communication is critical.
Mechanical skills. Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers operate complex machinery and occasionally perform routine maintenance.
Physical strength. Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers—particularly those who work on small farms—must be able to perform physically strenuous, repetitive tasks, such as lifting heavy objects and bending at the waist.
Employment of farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers is projected to show little or no change from 2018 to 2028. Over the past several decades, the efficiencies of large-scale crop production have led to the consolidation of acreage under fewer, but larger, farms. As farms become larger, they are able to invest more in productivity-enhancing technologies, reinforcing this effect.
Despite steady demand for agricultural products, many small farms operate with slim profit margins and are vulnerable to poor market conditions. As in the past, operators of smaller farms will likely continue to exit the business over the next decade.
Ag Production (CF)
Phone: (717) 485-3195 Ext: 1107
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Fulton County Area Vocational Technical School will not discriminate in its employment practices or its educational programs and activities on the basis of race, color, age, creed, religion, gender, sex, sexual orientation, ancestry, domicile, veterans status, national origin, marital status, pregnancy, handicap/disability or genetic information or any other legally protected characteristics in its admission procedures, educational programs and activities or employment practices, as required by the Pennsylvania School Code and related regulations, ADA, Title VI, Title IX, and Section 504 and will provide equal access to the Scouts of America and other designated youth groups. Students are encouraged to consider enrolling in career programs non-traditional to their gender. Fulton County Area Vocational Technical School will take steps to assure that the lack of English language skills will not be a barrier to admission and participation in career and technical education programs and will make reasonable accommodations for those with disabilities. Furthermore, harassment in any form, including bullying, by any individual will not be tolerated. All policies, regulations and practices of FCAVTS shall be guided by this statement.
Inquiries regarding compliance with Titles VI, IX and Section 504, should be forwarded to the Director of the Fulton County AVTS at:
145 East Cherry Street, McConnellsburg, PA 17233 (717) 485-5813