Introduction“You are what you eat” is a powerful statement ever given. A healthy life requires developing powerful healthy eating habits, like maintaining a balanced diet every day the life. The safe and efficient production of agricultural goods in the world that fill our table with wholesome foods, such as bread, butter, milk, fruits and vegetables, is a direct result. Agricultural Chemist is Also Known As
- Food Chemist
- Food scientist
Who is agricultural chemist?Agricultural chemists are those who improve the quality of soil to produce quality foods. Agricultural chemists mostly work on preserving the quality of soil and improving the quality of the soil. They develop effective materials such as fungicides, insecticides, herbicides, and other pesticides.
Typical Job Responsibilities of Agricultural ChemistsAn Agricultural Chemist would mostly need to:
- Research on various agricultural aspects, such as the chemical compositions and changes in livestock production and animal feed
- Research on sustainable ways to improve the quality and productivity of the field crops and animals
- Research on how humans ensure the quality of food and fibre availability to meet their own requirements and how they organise feed for their animals
- Study the soil, its types and composition to understand plant growth better and how to improve soil quality and its production
- Conduct various experiments in the laboratories and greenhouses also collect the data from farms and processing facilities to create reports
- Devise cost-effective production methods based on experiments with plant, animal reproduction, nutrition and farm management
- Find the best methods to regulate the cause and impact of biochemical procedures as associated with plant and animal growth
- Work closely with other scientists, including biochemists, toxicologists and biologists, to ensure that stakeholders adopt practices that are as sustainable as possible
- Prepare the detailed notes of the research process to create and present reports on the findings when need.
- Convey the experimental findings to scientists and also the non-scientific community, like food producers and the public
- Monitor the sale and purchase of various agricultural chemicals carefully, such as pesticides or herbicides
Standard Work EnvironmentAgricultural Chemists mostly work in a laboratory setting that may contain a simulation of their testing environment. However, you may also work in offices or in the field. You may also spend very long hours examining agricultural farms, collecting food or environmental samples, reviewing field trials, and studying various data reports, processing plants and distribution channels. Your domestic and international travel may be required to visit the clients and their farms or production plants.
Work ScheduleAgricultural Chemists mostly work full time. You may need to work beyond your regular hours to visit farms at times that suitable for farmers, evenings in particular, or to meet project deadlines. Part-time work is also possible.
EmployersFinding new job might seem challenging for newbies. Agricultural Chemists can boost their job search by asking in their network for referrals, contacting companies directly, by using job search platforms, going to job fairs, leveraging social media platforms, and inquiring at staffing agencies. Agricultural Chemists are generally employed by:
- Agricultural Divisions of Chemical Companies
- Educational Institutions
- Food Companies
- Government Agencies
- Independent Research Firms
Unions and Professional OrganizationsProfessional associations and organisations are crucial for Agricultural Chemists interested in pursuing professional development or connecting with like-minded professionals in their industry or occupation. Membership in one or more adds value to your resume while bolstering your credentials and qualifications.
Workplace Challenges· Risks associated with working with specialised equipment and hazardous chemicals · Tolerance toward harsh agricultural and food production environments such as cold storage temperatures, loud machinery and unpleasant smells · Long working hours without sufficient breaks increase susceptibility to burnout and mental frustration · Lack of work-life balance
Recommended Job SkillsMost Preferred: Science, Chemistry, Farming, Agriculture, Plants Also Preferred: Engineering, Food Safety, Biology, Data Analysis, Environmental Science, Biochemistry, Problem Solving, Earth Science, Environmental Management, and Mathematics.
Suggested Work ExperienceAny academic program that a potential Agricultural Chemist takes up typically requires a period of supervised experience, such as an internship. While recruiting aspiring Agricultural Chemists in entry-level jobs, employers value any form of pre-industry and first-hand work experience. It boosts your resume and allows more significant career advancement. Consider applying for internships and summer placements in the production line in food companies. The important takeaways from these experiences should be the network you build and the professional work environment that you witness. Read about the profession and interview job experts working in agricultural chemistry to prove your commitment to course providers and prospective employers.
Recommended QualificationsTo become an Agricultural Chemist, you must complete a bachelor’s degree or higher in chemistry or allied subjects such as botany, geology or biochemistry. Such degrees include courses in human toxicology, water and soil chemistry, and food science, which create a technical base for real-life practice while pushing students towards product development. Take high school classes in biology, physics, chemistry and mathematics to build a strong foundation of knowledge before entering technical schools and universities. Certifications, Licenses and Registration Licenses required for Agricultural Chemists vary across the world. Only graduates are eligible to apply for licenses, which also require you to pass an exam. Certification demonstrates an Agricultural Chemist’s competence in a skill set, mostly through work experience, training, and passing an examination. Certifications, though not necessary, add a huge value to your resume.
Projected Career Map
Performance, experience, and therefore the acquisition of skilled qualifications drive career progression. Employees with consistently high levels of performance may be eligible for promotion every two, three to five years.
However, career progression in this industry depends on your employers, and you may have to move between employers to gain promotions or increased salary levels.Most Agricultural Chemists begin their career as trainees and move up as they gain more experience. If you work in large organisations or government laboratories, you may be promoted to senior positions with greater responsibility to oversee a team of experts and resources. You may even choose to specialise in one area of agricultural chemistry or move into an allied scientific field. You may decide to move into a business area, such as sales, or even start an independent endeavour. Larger corporations provide higher opportunities for career flexibility, whereas tiny and medium enterprises offer bigger responsibilities early in your career. Agricultural Chemists square measure substantially in demand in developing countries, wherever farming techniques square measure still developing. Moving to such countries to assist improve farming may be a solid possibility. You could conjointly take applicable courses to diversify into connected areas like food examination.
Finally, when finishing the mandatory instructional necessities, Agricultural Chemists may additionally teach in universities and job faculties.
Candidates with a master’s degree in food science and prior work experience have the most successful job prospects. Beneficial Professional Development Completing a master’s degree in chemistry or relevant subjects is recommended if you plan on working in research-oriented positions.
Areas of study in a master’s program may include food biotechnology or bioscience, food chain systems, food production management, food safety or food quality management, food science & technology, and nutrition. Further, a PhD in advanced topics such as genetics, agronomy and biotechnology is necessary to teach and research in universities. PhD candidates benefit from taking courses in statistical analysis and experiment design.Besides formal education, continuing education (CE) courses are recommended to upskill yourself and ensure proficiency in technical skills and interpersonal relations, regardless of your age, job, or level of knowledge. Some large organisations offer graduate training schemes with additional training as needed. They may also have continuing professional development (CPD) programs that allow employees to take courses or attend seminars on various subjects, such as bioscience, food hygiene & management and food production systems. Smaller enterprises offer on-the-job training, but you may need to seek out additional CPD opportunities on your own.
How to Get a Job as an Agricultural ChemistTo bag a top-notch job as an Agricultural Chemist, you must equip yourself with a relevant degree and technical skills that you have acquired by taking advantage of research opportunities. Perform well at your interview because it can be the final piece of the puzzle. Before you begin applying for jobs and sending your resume, compare and contrast various firms on factors such as salary, career advancement opportunities, research areas, professional development and job satisfaction. Make absolutely sure your resume has adequate proof of the thorough research you should have ideally done to acquire an advantage in the employment market. Types of Agricultural Chemists Agricultural Chemists work in various areas. Broadly, they are divided into Animal Scientists, Food Scientists & Technologists and Soil & Plant Scientists. Animal Scientists study the domestication of farm animals consumed for meat, their reproduction & development, and diseases in or stemming from them. Food Scientists & Technologists study nutrition, food manufacturing, and making mass-produced food items more appealing or nutritious. They develop efficient preservation, packing, and distribution techniques. Soil & Plant Scientists study the soil, its chemicals, composition and properties to encourage plant growth.
Inspecting a nation’s food supply is crucially important for agricultural chemists. They lend their expertise to help farmers and producers on various issues. They assist in the management of diseases, pest infestations, excess crop supply and unseasonal weather to ensure adequate food supply for all. If food science, research and policy interest you, then Agricultural Chemist may be the job for you.source: Internet researches and alison.com