How to Start a Career in Regenerative Agricultureby Matt Carlson
Have you considered a career in regenerative agriculture?
Regenerative agriculture is an emerging and exciting area within the agricultural industry. With an ever-growing population, providing food while maintaining sustainable agriculture production is a difficult problem in need of a resolution. Regenerative agriculture aims to serve as an environmentally friendly and viable option to meet this demand.
A career in regenerative agriculture leads to positive effects for the environment and can be a gratifying career. That’s why we’ve broken down everything you need to know about getting started in this industry.
What is Regenerative Agriculture?
Regenerative agriculture is an environmentally friendly approach to agriculture. It revolves around increasing the soil’s biological activity to maintain a healthy ground to maximise the biodiversity that can naturally grow within the field. The process results in the natural ecosystem restoring itself from the degradation caused by the industrial agricultural system.
As opposed to the more commonly used industrial farming systems, regenerative farming aims to use fewer chemicals, including pesticides and artificial fertilisers. A healthy environment for biodiversity to thrive within the soil allows for the ground to increase its water holding capacity, ultimately improving the water cycle and creating healthy soil.
Other environmental benefits involved in regenerative agriculture practices include topsoil regeneration, which builds resilience to climate change and improves the general quality of the farm’s soil health. The process of regenerative agriculture also allows for soil carbon to be sequestered within the ground to help build the soil. This process is known as carbon sequestration. In addition to the environmental advantages of regenerative practices, the approach also lowers the costs associated with purchasing chemicals used in traditional industrial agriculture.
The Process of Regenerative Agriculture
With no streamlined method of precisely changing from industrial agriculture farming practices, the initial commitment to permaculture can prove to be a difficult one. Farmland varies in terms of the types of soil, resulting in a need for a personalised approach to regenerative agriculture.
Some considerations for farmers interested in introducing regenerative agricultural practices into their farming include:
Reduce the Use of Chemicals
Massively reducing the use of pesticides, including insecticides and fungicides with limited use of herbicides. This reduction allows for soil fertility and prevents erosion.
Ensuring that the soil is not left bare is essential through the process of cover cropping. By having the plant residue and cover crops protecting the ground from wind and water erosion, the soil can be allowed to achieve healthy growth, relying on natural resources.
Introducing livestock into the areas of soil growth allows for a spread of nutrients through excrement and accelerates the growth of organic soil matter. This process is also known as planned grazing.
By introducing a variety of plants and crops into the biome, a broader diversity of nutrients can be implemented into the soil, ultimately assisting in strengthening the quality of the soil.
Working in the agricultural industry can offer fantastic job security with the Australian government making projections of strong future growth. This demand is especially relevant for the regenerative agricultural sector, as the world is continually looking to adopt more environmentally friendly approaches to minimise the effects of climate change. Agricultural operators in Australia earn an average of $78,000 per year.
Other roles working within the agricultural space exist for agricultural consultants. This career path may involve an opportunity to advise farmers on switching to regenerative agriculture methods, while also including more testing work by collecting samples and testing soils. A Bachelor’s degree is typically required to work within this profession. An Australian agricultural consultant earns an average of $115,336 per year.
Agriculture operator salary
agriculture consultant salary
What Do I Need to Get into Regenerative Agriculture?
If you’re looking to begin your journey into the world of agriculture, a Certificate II in Agriculture is the place to start! The course covers all the essential skills you’ll need for farm upkeep and maintenance, working with animals and the process of growing and harvesting crops.
To work as an agricultural consultant, a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Science is required to further your understanding of crops, soils and livestock.
Working in the regenerative agricultural industry offers an exciting and rewarding job opportunity. Coupled with the environmental benefits that are associated with the industry, regenerative agriculture results in an immensely satisfying career path!
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