DAIRY FARMING

IT'S A CAREER AND LIFESTYLE

Dairy farming offers a career outdoors, working in a team, with farm animals, machinery, technology, pasture and crops.

Keep fit, challenge yourself and learn wide ranging skills that can be applied across multiple sector roles in dairying farming.

Positive, enthusiastic and driven individuals can have a career dairy farming and gain qualifications and progress their career. You can work your way to the top and own your own business.

FARM / DAIRY ASSISTANT

Perfect for someone with little or no experience. You’ll learn the basics of day-to-day farming.

HERD MANAGER

Usually requires two to three years on-farm experience plus some training.

ASSISTANT MANAGER

Assist with the management of day-to-day activities linked to farm production including planning and staff management in the absence of the farm manager or owner.

FARM MANAGER

Responsible for meeting farm goals, including all aspects of production, stock, environmental and staff management. Should be involved in the budgeting process but will not set the budget.

SHARE-FARMING

The landowner provides the land and the share-farmer provides stock and equipment.

BUSINESS / OPERATIONS MANAGER

Responsible for meeting overall business goals including agreeing farm goals with farm owners, planning, reviewing execution and reporting against the farm goals.

VARIABLE ORDER SHAREMILKER AND CONTRACT MILKER

You’ll manage the owner’s cows and the farm and get paid on the basis of the amount of milk you produce.

50:50 SHAREMILKER

You are your own boss, own your own herd of cows and farming equipment but use someone else’s farm. The sharemilker and land-owner split the costs and profits.

FARM OWNER

Own your own farm.

CAREER TIPS AND TRICKS

make your first job count

Build your reputation from day one and you’ll go far in the dairy sector.

Get a mentor

A mentor is someone already working or familiar with the career you choose; someone you respect and can use as a sounding board for your ideas.

Other career options

Once you have some farming experience, you might set up a contracting business, work in a rural store, train other people or move into an agri-business career.

Employers want

Employees with the right attitude, skills and a willingness to learn.

research

Ask questions, search the internet, talk to people, visit workplaces and gather information so you make an informed choice. CareersNZ can tell you a job’s pay, opportunities, and related jobs.

job search

Ask around or approach a farm. Check out Farm Source jobs, Trade Me jobs, Seek or Indeed.

“My future is with large corporate farms where the career opportunities are great.”

DAIRY SECTOR HATS

Do something that really matters

 

EDUCATION

Education and qualifications

To progress your career, it’s recommended you gain qualifications, undertake on-the-job training and complete courses while you work.

Depending on your career pathway, you can study a Certificate, Diploma or Degree qualification before you get a job or study part time while in employment.

school

To support your career, it’s recommended you study maths, sciences and business. IT skills are also important.

DAIRYNZ SCHOLARSHIPS

Could a DairyNZ scholarship make the difference? Find out and apply.

university

Some farmers have a Bachelor degree in an agricultural field, usually from Lincoln, Massey or Waikato University.

Degree options include a Bachelor of:

  • Agricultural Science (Agri-Science)
  • Science (Agriculture)
  • Commerce (Agriculture)
  • Agribusiness
  • Accounting / Economics
  • Environmental Science

training institutions and providers

A number of training providers offer courses for dairy farming from taster courses to National Certificates, Diplomas and Degrees.

Take action

Discover training and study options.

DISCOVER YOUR FIT

What do you enjoy? Where can you make a difference? Match your skills and interests to a dairy sector career.

EXPLORE CAREERS

Dairy farming? Agri-business? Agri-science? There is a career for everyone in the dairy sector.

TAKE ACTION

How to make your career happen? Find out where to learn and study, and who to contact to make it happen.

CONNECT

Get social, network and make those connections happen. Talk to people, visit workplaces, and search the internet.