Should you become a crop scientist?

If you’re interested in farming, but also love science, then consider becoming a crop scientist because you get the best of both worlds. They help farmers grow the best crops, be it maize or pumpkins for human consumption, by ensuring that they make use of good quality seed. Crop Scientist also advise farmers on providing high quality nutrition to their animals to ensure they are eating healthy. This in return will to produce healthy, good quality products for human consumption, such as milk, meat, wool, and so on.

What does a crop scientist do?

Crop scientists generally specialize in plant production or crop development. They spend a lot of time outdoors speaking to farmers and evaluating the quality of their crops. They also spend time in the lab doing research on how to further solve problems or challenges regarding planting, harvesting and cultivation of various crops.

With the ever-growing world population, so many more people and animals need to eat every day. This is where a crop scientist comes in, to ensure that farmers can increase their yields and nutritional value of the crop. They advise farmers on ways to not only improve the amount they produce, but the quality of their product as well.

Crop scientists educate farmers on the importance of producing the best feed for man and animal, how they need to take into account factors such as managing the environmental impact of agriculture, pest control, soil quality and weather. If these factors are not managed properly, they can lead to a bad harvest.

I’m interested, tell me more…

If the idea of producing good quality crops for man and animals sounds good to you, then this is the career to consider. If you work hard at school, pass Grade 12 with good marks in subjects like Physical Science and Maths, then you’ll be able to get into a university to do a degree that will help you get your foot into this industry.

The degrees you can do at university include a BSc in Plant Production or Horticulture or Seed Science. To start your career as a crop scientist, you also need to be someone who enjoys working in the field, growing crops, working under pressure, traveling, as well as working with large amounts of data. You can expect to do the following on the job: a lot of field work when inspecting crops, interaction with farmers/growers to advise on growing healthy crops, recording and monitoring of trials and commercial crops, sourcing and contracting of reliable growers, close contact with sales teams to forecast availability of seed.

Crop scientists help farmers increase crop yields and nutritional value of the crop for both man and animals. You too can become a crop scientist if you pass matric very well and get into a very good South African university to do a course related to crop science. Follow SANSOR on Facebook or Instagram for more information on this and other developments in this exciting industry.