Farmers are individuals who work in the agricultural industry in a varied selection of areas within the industry. There are several kinds of farmers ranging from farmers who raise animals to farmers who grow crops. No matter the area of the agricultural industry, a farmer's main goal is to raise a good crop and help to provide a large amount of goods for the world. Farmers are responsible for all of our organic crops that we need to survive. Without food, the world would slowly die, and farmers work hard every day to keep plenty of crops and animal products in the market to keep that from happening.
Farmers are responsible for all aspects of their chosen field. Whether it is the purchase and planting of seed on a cash crop farm, the purchase of quality breeding stock on an animal husbandry farm, or the diet and care of a specific type of livestock on an animal production farm, the farmers need to have a very wide knowledge base of the agricultural industry as a whole.
Besides the general knowledge of planting dates, breeding cycles, and harvesting periods, farmers often need a good working knowledge of mechanics in order to keep their equipment running in optimal order.
Farmers need a strong knowledge of their chosen field. Animal husbandry requires a strong knowledge of blood lines and species types, as well as the best possible out-crossings of those types to provide the best results in breeding. Cash crop farmers will need a strong working knowledge of planting times, harvesting times, and weather patterns in order to gain a good footing in their field. Animal production farmers will need to know the diets, illnesses, treatments, and growth rates necessary for their specialized areas. Fish farmers need to know the specifics of the species they are raising as well as the environmental requirements placed upon them by federal, state, and local governments.
All of the above types of farmers will also need at least a working knowledge of mechanics in order to keep costs down on their farms as well as have strong business management skills, record keeping skills, and communication skills. Without these basic skills a farmer will often encounter added costs that could be avoided with just a little background knowledge.
A strong working knowledge of the limitations and regulations of the Food & Drink Industry, Food and Drug Administration, State Agencies, and Local Government is a must for farmers, as there are many regulations placed on the agricultural industry.
Where a farmer works is based on which area of the agricultural industry they chose to work in. Here we will outline just a few of the many options available, to include fish farming, cash crop farming, animal husbandry, and livestock production.
In the area of fish farming farmers will manage a large fishery, often specializing in one variety of fish, such as tilapia. These farmers specialize in the raising of fish to be processed for consumption or to be released into lakes, rivers, and streams in the attempt to repopulate a dying waterway.
In the area of cash crop farming a farmer will raise crops to market for consumption, medical use, animal food production, and the growing herbal industry. A farmer in this field will be responsible for the planting, fertilization, and harvesting of the crops, as well as transport to the proper production elevators for sale at harvest.
Some of these crops may be processed to be sold back to farmers for future use. These crops are purchased by seed companies who treat the crops and process them, then sell them to farmers to use the next season as seeds to plant their fields. Other examples of such a circular sale include crops that are purchased to produce animal feed, which is then later sold to farmers in the animal husbandry and livestock production fields.
In animal husbandry farmers concentrate on providing healthy, hearty livestock for later processing for consumption. Farmers often specialize in one type of animal in this field, carefully breeding the livestock to produce the best quality offspring each season. Offspring are then raised to take the place of the current breeding stock over time, with the current breeding stock sold after a period of time.
Also, some offspring may be sold to other farms who specialize in livestock production to be raised for a specific production purpose. A veal farm is one example of a farm involved in specialized livestock production that may purchase offspring from an animal husbandry farm for a specific production purpose. As the calves must be placed on a special diet, these farms are responsible for holding the livestock to that diet, monitoring their health, and selling them to production facilities at the proper age, weight, and size to produce the necessary product requirements for their field.