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General Farm Workers

What they do?

General farm workers perform some or all of the following duties:

A. General farm workers can become specialized in a particular type of crop or livestock production through experience.

B. Plant, fertilize, cultivate, spray, irrigate and harvest crops

C. Feed and tend livestock and poultry

D. Milk cows

E. Operate and maintain farm machinery and equipment

F. Detect disease and health problems in crops, livestock and poultry

G. Examine produce for quality and prepare for market

Where they find work?

1. Farms - 94.0%
2. Support activities for farms - 1.0%
3. Wholesale trade - 1.0%

What education do I need?

1. You need no specific education or training. However, you may obtain college certificates or specialized courses related to farming, such as farm equipment mechanics, agricultural welding, tree pruning, and pesticide application.

2. You may benefit from previous farm experience, maybe on a family farm.

3. With experience, you may move up the ranks to become a supervisor.

4. Most recent entrants have a community college diploma, and almost 2 in 5 have a trade/vocational certificate.

High School Subject that will help:

1. Mechanics
2. Physical Education
3. Sciences

What can you expect to make:

The average hourly wages for General Farm Workers is $10.67/HR, which is below average for occupations in the primary industry sector and are below average for all intermediate occupations. These wages grew at an average rate from 2002 to 2004.

Average Wage

General Farm Workers wages

Expected Wage by Age

General Farm Workers Wage By Age


11% of General Farm Workers are unemployed. This rate is above the average for intermediate occupations.


General Farm Workers Unemployment

Trends in Unemployment

General Farm Workers Trends in Unemployment

Current Job Outlook:

The job outlook for General Farm Workers is considered Below Average because:

1. Employment grew at a below-average rate.

2. Hourly wages ($10.67) are below the average ($18.07), and the rate of wage growth is close to the average.

3. The unemployment rate (11%) is above the 2004 average (7%).

Future Job Prospects:

Your job outlook will continue to be Below Average because:

1. The employment growth rate will likely be below average. The consolidation of farms, technological innovation, and low prices for agricultural products will likely continue to slow the demand for workers.

2. The retirement rate will likely be below average, and the number of retiring workers should not contribute significantly to job openings.

3. The number of job seekers will likely exceed the number of job openings.

Highest Concetration:

The highest concentrations are found in Alberta and Prince Edward Island while the lowest concentrations are in New Brunswick and Newfoundland.

Useful Experience:

1. Physical/outdoor work

2. Environment/safety procedures

3. Troubleshooting

Part Time Workers

General Farm Workers Part Time Workers

Part time workers:

28% of General Farm Workers are employed only on a part-time basis. There were 67,100 workers employed in these occupations in 2004, a decrease of 15% since 1997.

Age Demographics

General Farm Workers Age Demographics

Age Demographics:

The relatively high percentage of younger workers suggests more entry-level positions and jobs that may serve as stepping stones in a career. The retirement rate to 2009 will likely be below average because of a tendency to retire at an older-than-average age (66).

Self Employed

General Farm Workers Self Employed

Self Employed:

Roughly 19% of General Farm Workers are self-employed. This is considered Average for the industry as a whole.

Men vs Women

General Farm Workers Men vs Women

Men vs Women:

29% of the individuals employed as General Farm Workers are women. Compared to other industries, this is Average.