Insights:

  1. Agricultural marketing industry primarily caters to farmers. It aims to improve their quality of life by helping them advance to the forefront of agricultural mechanization. If this is something you feel passionate about, then this is the right job for you.
  2. Rural marketing requires field work in rural areas and interacting with farmers to persuade them to buy your product. Therefore, you need to know that it’s not a job for comfort seekers.
  3. One of the key challenges in this job is the amount of traveling you have to do. Your actual working hours often exceed the official office timings and as such it makes maintaining a work-personal life balance quite difficult.
  4. This is one of the few professions where professional and financial growth are accompanied by job satisfaction. Albeit, your salary is strictly performance-based and does not necessarily depend on the number of years of work experience.

Profile Details

Name – Ritesh Choudhary

Profession – Regional Manager at TAFE [Tractors and Farm Equipment Ltd]

Age – 41

Gender – Male

City – Kolkata

Industry – Agricultural Marketing

Where have you been born and raised?

I was born and raised in Amravati, Maharashtra. My parents are retired accountants. I have 2 brothers. Elder one has a Ph.D. and is a senior professor in a college and my younger brother is a child specialist.

Who all had the most influence on you and how?

There was no specific individual who influenced me and entering this field wasn’t circumstantial either. I always had a very avid interest in the field of marketing. As an engineering graduate, I became fascinated with agricultural mechanization, which is how I ended up in my current profession.

Please give us a summary of your career.

After getting an engineering degree from Government College of Engineering, Amravati, I started my career in 2003 at a company called Swaraj Tractors. Over the years, I got promoted and worked in different states like Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh. I am currently working at TAFE as a regional marketing manager. I’m responsible for handling multiple states like Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Orissa, Assam and north-east part of the country.

Which institutes are best for the education of agricultural marketing?

I don’t have sufficient knowledge about any specific educational institutes, so I won’t recommend any.

What is the minimum qualification to get into agriculture marketing?

What I am sure of is that the minimum qualifying degree to enter in this line of work is engineering graduate or agricultural engineering. Usually, companies conduct their own recruitment drives which include written exams and interviews.

What are the costs associated with the education of agriculture marketing?

Like I said I’m not very sure about the educational side of things but doing an engineering course from a reputed institute costs somewhere between 10–15 lakhs INR totally.

What are the typical entry-level jobs in Agricultural Marketing?

People usually start off from the position of Territory Engineer or Territory Manager since that’s the most basic level. You get to handle 3–4 products. There is a period of on-the-job training for fresher’s provided by the company, it lasts for about 3–6 months.

What is the salary in agriculture marketing?

5 years of experience – 50,000–60,000 INR/month

10 years of experience – 1, 00,000–1, 50,000 INR/month

15 years of experience – 1, 50,000–2, 00,000 INR/month

20+ years of experience – 2, 00,000–2, 50,000 INR/month

Keep in mind that I’m giving you estimates but these vary from individual to individual; because in this field, the salary increase is not commensurate with an increase in work experience, it’s purely performance based.

Please describe your work.

My work mostly includes monitoring, planning, implementation and application along with team handling. I work 6 days a week from 9 AM to 6 PM, with Sundays off.

What are some of the positives, which would encourage someone to consider Agricultural Marketing as a career?

This industry is heavily dependent on farmers and our main objective is to help the farmers in our country to advance via mechanization and if someone is passionate with regards to that line of action then this is the job for them. There is plenty of scope for professional growth in this industry, that being said if someone isn’t interested in interacting with the farmers or doing fieldwork in rural areas then you simply can’t function in this line of work.

What are some of the challenges that you would want someone know of when considering agriculture marketing?

Just like any job in marketing one’s salary is directly dependent on their performance and as such that does make it extremely competitive.

Another challenging aspect of a marketing job is the amount of traveling involved.

Also, your actual working hours aren’t restricted by the official timings since a lot of times you might end up having to work on the weekends as well.

All of this does make it hard to maintain equilibrium between your work and personal life.

What kind of person would be happy in agriculture marketing?

An individual has to be comfortable with rural marketing, he/she needs to be able to explain the benefits of their product to the farmer and since a lot of competition exists in that field you have to be articulate and persuasive enough to convince the consumer to buy your product.

Given another choice, what would you do differently as far as your professional selections are concerned?

No, I don’t think I would have gone for anything else.

What would be your advice to students or professionals who are just getting into agriculture marketing?

This is a really good profession because you will find that it includes both financial growth and job satisfaction whereas in quite a few professions the two might be mutually exclusive. The only thing the job demands from your side is interest in the area. If you think you can devote your passion and energy into it, the sky’s the limit.

You may also like to read our conversation with Marketing Veteran Mr. Vinod Kumar here.

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