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Plant and Animal Pathway

People who work in the plant and animal systems pathway will study plants and their growth, helping producers of food, feed and fiber crops continue to feed a growing population while conserving natural resources and maintaining the environment. In addition, they also develop ways to improve the nutritional value of crops and the quality of seeds. They use genetic engineering to develop crops resistant to pest and drought.

In addition they will be prepared to work with animal systems to develop better, more efficient ways of producing and processing meat, poultry, eggs and dairy products.

They study genetics, nutrition, reproduction, growth and development of domesticated farm animals. Some individuals inspect and grade livestock food products, purchase livestock or work in technical sales or marketing. Others advise agricultural producers on how to upgrade animal housing facilities properly, lower mortality rates, handle waste matter or increase production of animal products, such as milk or eggs. Small Animal care workers train, feed, water, groom, bathe and exercise animals. They also clean, disinfect and repair their cages.

Courses Offered within the Pathway

 Sample Occupations

  • Agricultural Economist
  • Farmer / Rancher
  • Agricultural Educator
  • Food Scientist
  • Agricultural Sales Representative
  • Food Inspector
  • Animal Geneticist
  • Geneticist
  • Aquaculturalist
  • Meat Graders
  • Animal Nutritionist
  • Microbiologist
  • Bioengineer
  • Plant Breeder and Geneticist
  • Biochemist
  • Reproductive Physiologist
  • Botanist
  • Soil and Water Conservationist
  • Certified Crop Advisor
  • Tree Surgeon
  • Commodity Marketing Specialist
  • Veterinarian
  • Education and Extension Specialist
  • Veterinary Assistants

Employment Outlook

Demand for food and fiber will increase because of the growth in world population and in demand for U.S. agricultural exports as developing nations improve their economies and personal incomes. Plant scientists are using new avenues of research in biotechnology to develop plants and food crops that require less fertilizer, fewer pesticides and herbicides, and even less water for growth. Animal scientists have worked to develop better, more efficient ways of producing and processing meat, poultry, eggs, and milk. Dairy scientists, poultry scientists, animal breeders, and other scientists in related fields study the genetics, nutrition, reproduction, growth, and development of domestic farm animals. These new advances will continue to provide a demand for careers in plant and animal science.

In addition, such areas as small animal care, veterinary science and marketing and sales constitute a fast growing service industry. While the number of individuals on farms and ranches is decreasing the number of individuals in the service industry is growing at a significant rate.

Minimum Equipment List

Equipment Lists - This suggested list provides the catalog numbers and pricing from Learning Labs, Inc. Equipment may be purchased from a vendor of your choice.