From the earliest days that hunter-gatherers settled in one place, the world has had farmers. The idea of growing food instead of constantly searching for it was revolutionary, and the development of civilization is due directly to the beginnings of agriculture.
Of course, agriculture has itself been revolutionized during the thousands of years since it began. Simple handmade tools and tiny plots have been replaced by complex mechanical implements guided across thousands of acres by satellite navigation.
Today’s farm isn’t just a cookie-cutter of its neighbors. The career offers the opportunity to be what you want it to be and provide income and satisfaction.
The Opportunity To Further Your Own Missions
There are so many different types of food movements in the world today that it seems almost everybody has very strong opinions about what they will and won’t eat. Getting into farming can allow you to work both sides of this issue. Not only can you promote the food lifestyle you prefer, you can also tap into the market of people who think likewise. You are simultaneously creating and satisfying demand!
This doesn’t just mean the food you’re producing. It also can be about the way in which you produce it, such as natural fertilizer and low-input systems.
You can also promote methods that require less overhead by renovating and repairing, along with trying to find used Kubota tractors instead of buying new, will help save thousands of dollars.
The point is that you can speak loudly with a farm, and you can say things that are important to people and the environment.
Declaring The Ultimate In Independence!
This is closely related to our first point. While certain farm production systems require very specific products due to contract arrangements, most farmers still sell on an open market system that provides a great deal of latitude in what products are produced and how they are produced.
You have complete choice about seed varieties, marketing decisions, and the specific enterprises you choose to take on. If you want to lease land for windmills, you can do it. If you are tired of raising pigs and want to go into poultry, you can do it.
And beyond that, you have independence in your daily routines; if you don’t feel like fixing that barn door today and would rather go to a meeting at your local cooperative, you can do it. There’s no boss setting your minute-by-minute schedule.
Of course, independence requires responsibility. That barn door will eventually have to be fixed, if not today. But that can develop a greater sense of responsibility in you, because you are directly linked to the motivation for taking action. When a regional sales manager tells your local sales manager to tell you to increase your volume of product X, the reasoning for this push is lost in the layers of bureaucracy. When your barn door needs to be fixed, you know that it’s because failure to do so will introduce the cattle to places they do not need to go.
Gaining Personal Fulfillment
Humans have three basic needs: food, clothing, and shelter. In agriculture, you have the opportunity to contribute to all three. Of course, if you’re producing cotton or grain, the massive volume of materials that you may be producing can make it can be nearly impossible to see the final consumption of what you grew. You will never bump into someone on the street wearing a cotton t-shirt that you know was produced from crops on your farm.
But if you market locally and directly to the consumer, you do get the chance to see satisfied buyers return for more, with a compliment about how good the food was or how happy they were to feed your natural product to their family. It’s all the satisfaction of any small business operator, with one big difference: You aren’t a reseller or a sales person only. You created this product from essentially nothing, with your hard work and knowledge. It’s an unbeatable high once you achieve it!
Farming is a unique occupation. You don’t check the want ads and find an opportunity to go buy or rent land, buy equipment, and set up a farm. But if you can work through the somewhat nontraditional startup process, it can be one of the most satisfying, fulfilling careers in the world.