8431 General farm workers

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Lead statement

General farm workers plant, cultivate and harvest crops, raise livestock and poultry and maintain and repair farm equipment and buildings. This group includes operators of farm machinery. General farm workers are employed on crop, livestock, fruit, vegetable and specialty farms.

Example Titles

  • cattle ranch labourer
  • beef cattle farm worker
  • farm machinery operator
  • general farm worker
  • vegetable farm worker
  • harvester machine operator
  • hatchery worker
  • poultry farm worker
  • dairy farm worker
  • grain farm worker

Main duties

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

  • Plant, fertilize, cultivate, spray, irrigate and harvest crops
  • Feed and tend livestock and poultry
  • Milk cows
  • Perform or assist in performing breeding activities of farm animals
  • Operate and maintain farm machinery and equipment
  • Follow food safety and security and animal bio-security procedures
  • Detect disease and health problems in crops, livestock and poultry
  • Examine produce for quality and prepare for market
  • Set and monitor water lines, air flow and temperature in barns, pens and chicken coops
  • Maintain or assist in the maintenance of facilities and farm infrastructure including cleaning stables, barns, barnyards and pens.
  • General farm workers can become specialized in a particular type of crop or livestock production through experience.

Employment requirements

  • There are no specific education or training requirements. However, a college certificate or specialized courses related to farming, such as farm equipment mechanics, agricultural welding, tree pruning and pesticide application, are available.
  • Basic farm knowledge, usually obtained from working on a family farm, may be required for employment.
  • A course or certificate in first aid may be required.

Additional information

  • Progression to supervisory positions is possible with experience.

Exclusions

  • Agricultural service contractors, farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers (82528252)
  • Harvesting labourers (86118611)
  • Managers in agriculture (08210821)