Pay for agricultural / horticultural consultants varies depending on experience and whether or not they are self-employed.
Within the bands below, agricultural consultants are likely to earn more than horticultural consultants with the same amount of experience :
Agricultural / horticultural consultants with less than five years' experience usually earn between $45,000 and $80,000 a year.
Those with more than five years' experience usually earn between $80,000 and $150,000.
As they become more senior, agricultural / horticultural consultants are able to earn bonuses, or a proportion of the income they generate for the business they work for.
Self-employed agricultural / horticultural consultants charge an hourly rate, which can range from $35 to over $100 an hour.
Some earn more than $150,000 a year.
Source : New Zealand Institute of Primary Industry Management, 2016.
This information is a guide only. )
What you will do
Agricultural / horticultural consultants may do some or all of the following :
advise farmers and growers on how to improve the profitability, efficiency and sustainability of the farm management system
assist farmers and growers in developing and implementing business plans
advise on or oversee budgets, cashflow and production targets for clients
research factors that affect crop production, pasture growth and animal breeding
collect data and samples relating to factors that affect production, including produce, feed and soil
advise farmers and growers on fertiliser and nutrient use to improve productivity and environmental performance
investigate, plan and advise on methods for coping with the effects of natural disasters, such as floods, and pests and diseases.
Skills and knowledge
Agricultural / horticultural consultants need to have :
in-depth knowledge of the area of agriculture or horticulture they work in
knowledge of farm or orchard systems management
competency in business planning and financial management
understanding of production methods and how to apply these to real-life situations.
Agricultural and horticultural consultants :
may work irregular and long hours if self-employed or new to the role. They can be particularly busy in peak farming and growing seasons
work in offices and on clients' farms or orchards
work in all weather conditions
may travel within New Zealand or overseas to attend conferences or visit clients, factories, banks or export marketing firms.
Unless you have extensive experience in a relevant field, to become an agricultural or horticultural consultant you need a Bachelor's degree in one of the following :
agricultural or horticultural science
natural resources and environmental studies
You also need a driver's licence.
A tertiary entrance qualification is needed to enter further training. Useful subjects include biology, chemistry, physics, English and maths, and agricultural and horticultural science.
Agricultural / horticultural consultants need to be :
patient, friendly, empathetic and able to gain the trust of people
good communicators, with listening and public speaking skills
skilled in analysis and decision making
well organised, with good time management skills.
Useful experience for agricultural / horticultural consultants includes :
work on livestock farms, orchards or vegetable farms
sales, marketing or any work dealing with customers or clients
work within the agribusiness sector such as in banking, fertiliser companies, or industry organisations like DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand
work in an agricultural or horticultural research institution or laboratory.
Agricultural / horticultural consultants need to be fit and healthy because their work includes walking around farms and orchards to check livestock and / or horticulture crops.