Career in Pomology

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Opportunities

After completion of Class 12, science students usually either look for getting admission in Engineering Colleges or Medical Colleges. However, apart from these two major streams of career-making there is another equally respectable and lucrative field: 'Agricultural Science'. Getting job opportunities in agricultural streams are easier than any other realm of science as it has not yet reached to the point of plateau. The future belongs to agriculture as to feed ever increasing population; there is no other way than 'Agriculture'. One of its most important disciplines is Horticulture, the science of cultivation of garden crops, which is further divided into vegetable, flower and fruit culture.

Pomology or science of fruit production has ample career opportunities in the gamut of job realm. Plenty of jobs require knowledge and training in fruit production. The level of training could be vocational or at the school/college/Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) level. Usually, a respectable job in the domain of fruit production sector requires degree in this discipline. College level education provides more in depth knowledge of the field and offers job opportunities at supervisory or managerial levels, while on the other hand, post-graduation and doctorate level degree render more rewarding career opportunities in the sphere of pomology to conduct research or impart teaching. The following list is aimed to provide basic information on some of the more common career opportunities in the field of pomology.

Fruit Grower/Farmer

If one has enough land, one can have his/her own orchard as an independent grower and opt for producing fruit crops for retail or wholesale markets depending upon the market opportunities and demand. Alternatively, one can also be employed by other producers or be associated with local Fruit Growers’ Associations, which extend necessary advisories and logistics to member growers.  

 Nurseryman/Nursery Manager

There is immense scope for setting up of own fruit nursery as there is a huge demand for genuine and good quality planting material of fruit crops all over the country. Different fruit crops can be raised through seed/budding/grafting in such nurseries throughout the year; thereby, generating employment throughout the year. Various central agencies like the National Horticulture Board, Gurugram, and the National Bank for Agriculture And Rural Development (NABARD) and State Governments have different schemes for promotion of nursery development for individuals.

Fruit scientist/Pomologist

This job requires research and extending skill to improve production of fruit crops. This may involve teaching as well, sometimes. Most of such personnel are employed by educational institutions, State Agricultural Universities and government organisations such as ICAR through Agricultural Research Services (ARS) for its various research institution situated all across the country.  At present, more than 4500 scientists are working under ICAR. Others may be employed by private companies, biotechnology firms, botanical gardens, food companies and research institutions. Requires a minimum of a Master’s degree; however, Doctoral degree is desirable in most cases.

Lecturer/Assistant Professor/Training Associate

They are recruited by State Agricultural Universities and Colleges. This requires a minimum of Master’s degree in Horticulture with National Eligibility Test (NET) or Doctoral degree in Horticulture.

Technician

A technician provides technical assistance to pomologist/Fruit scientist. They are also employed by same agencies as mentioned above. It requires a minimum of a graduate degree in agriculture or horticulture.

 Subject matter specialist (SMS)

Such personnel develop and coordinate programs to promote horticulture in their area under Krishi Vigyan Kendra, which works either under Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) Institutes, State Agricultural Universities (SAUs) or Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). They may also conduct some applied research, which are finally demonstrated at farmer’s field. This requires minimum of a Master’s degree but Ph.D. is always preferred.

 Horticulture Officer

They are recruited by State Public Service Commission. This requires Master’s degree in Horticulture.

Agriculture/ Horticulture Supervisor

These vacancies are mostly called by the State Agricultural Departments. The minimum educational requirement is B. Sc. (Ag.) or B. Sc. (Hort.).

 Business Sales Representative

A business sales representative promotes, markets, and distributes fruit related products to retail or wholesale businesses and growers. Such personnel may work for companies, which manufacture or sell chemicals, fertilisers, equipment, or processed/value added products, as well as plant suppliers. The educational requirements vary.

Consultant

They provide expert advice to businesses and fruit growers. They may be specialised in one area; e.g. nursery crops. Many are self-employed; others work for equipment companies, pesticide companies or private organisations such as Reliance Foundation. This may require a minimum of a four-year college degree and sometimes a Master’s degree.

Author: Dr Hare Krishna, Principal Scientist (Horticulture), I.C.A.R.- Central Institute for Arid Horticulture, Beechwal, Bikaner, Rajasthan.

Posted By : ScienceIndia Administrator
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