How Much Money Does An Agriculturist Make?

How Much Money Does An Agriculturist Make?
How Much Money Does An Agriculturist Make?

Agriculturists, or agricultural and food scientists, study all aspects of crops, plants, and food animals. Agriculture and food scientists are classified into three subcategories by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. These three subcategories represent agricultural scientists’ primary areas of specialization. Salaries differ depending on the specialty, industry, and location.

Food Scientists and Technologists

Food scientists analyze the content of foods and determine the best processing and packaging methods using their knowledge of chemistry, engineering, microbiology, and related sciences. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics data from May 2020, the average annual salary was $68,830. The top ten percent made $125,280 or more, while the bottom ten percent made $40,520 or less. The federal government was the highest-paying sector, with an average annual salary of $92,810. Hawaii and New Jersey had the highest average wages for this occupation among the states that reported salary data to the bureau: $100,930 and $95,140, respectively.

Animal Scientists

Animal Scientists
Animal Scientists

Animal scientists study farm animals’ development, nutrition, genetics, and reproduction. Veterinary services are not included in this category. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for this profession was $74,540 in May 2020, with the highest-paid 10% earning at least $125,250 and the lowest-paid 10% earning no more than $40,720. With an average salary of $101,070, the federal government and companies that provide animal production support, with an average salary of $95,880, were the industries with the highest average salaries. According to the bureau, animal scientists in Maryland earned an average of $100,700 per year, while those in California made an average of $98,810.

Soil and Plant Scientists

Plant and soil scientists may study crop yields, conduct breeding experiments, or investigate how plants, trees, and crops respond to different soil compositions. They might look at the mineral and chemical elements in the soil to see how they affect plant growth, or they might look into pest control methods. According to bureau data for May 2020, the average salary was $73,040, with 10% earning $39,650 or less and 10% earning $117,450 or more. The average salary for manufacturers of pesticides, fertilizers, and other agricultural chemicals was $84,160, and the federal government was second at $77,510. Maryland, with an annual salary of $88,540, and West Virginia, with an annual salary of $82,730, were the two highest-paying states.

Job Outlook

Job Outlook
Job Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for agriculture and food scientists will grow at the same rate as the general average by 2030, increasing by about 9%. Emerging technologies, such as pest-resistant crops genetically engineered to resist pests, as well as the need to protect the environment while increasing output, will drive growth. Agricultural and food scientists will also be needed in other emerging industries such as biofuels and biosecurity.

2020 Salary Information for Agricultural and Food Scientists

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, agricultural and food scientists earned a median annual salary of $68,830 in 2020. A 25th percentile salary of $47,880 was earned by agricultural and food scientists, meaning that 75 percent earned more. The salary for the 75th percentile is $84,090, which means that 25% of people earn more. In 2020, 37,400 people were hired as agricultural and food scientists in the U.S.