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Livestock, Grain and Seed Agents » Learn More

Livestock agent / buyer

Livestock agents/buyers may do some or all of the following

  • visit farms to assess the weight and condition of animals that may be ready for sale
  • receive orders for stock from meat processing plants
  • telephone farmers and other clients
  • plan and arrange work for the week
  • assess the value of livestock
  • buy and sell livestock on farms and at auctions on behalf of clients
  • draft prime stock (sort stock into groups) for meat processing or export companies
  • keep records of the sale of livestock
  • arrange transport for animals to farms, auction yards or meat processing plants
  • advise farmers about market trends and new stock prices
  • attend sales or stock auctions
  • act as an auctioneer at sales
  • sort animals once they are in the stockyards
  • arrange the sale and purchase of stock for fattening
  • advise clients on genetic improvement.

Livestock agents/buyers need to have

  • knowledge of farm management
  • knowledge of stock breeds, stock classes and stock health
  • the ability to classify and price stock
  • animal-handling skills
  • knowledge of market values and trends, and how climatic conditions affect stock prices
  • knowledge of the standards required to sell animals
  • knowledge of auctioneering
  • sales and negotiation skills, including the ability to persuade farmers to sell at the right time
  • good communication and people skills
  • planning, organisational, and problem-solving skills
  • record-keeping skills.

Livestock agents/buyers need to be

  • hard-working, friendly, patient, and confident when they are dealing with farmers
  • responsible and honest because they often deal with large amounts of money
  • accurate and able to exercise good judgement because mistakes can be costly.


Grain and seed agent

Grain and seed agents may do some or all of the following

  • supply seeds, grain, sprays and fertilisers to farmers
  • advise farmers on pasture and crop varieties, the planning and rotation of crops, and how to plant and harvest crops
  • advise farmers on weed and pest control, and fertiliser use
  • organise the harvesting of crops
  • blend seeds
  • buy harvested crops from farmers or seed and grain wholesalers
  • sell harvested crops, and keep records of sales and orders
  • promote company services.

Grain and seed agents need to have

  • knowledge of grain and seed varieties
  • knowledge of planting and harvesting methods
  • knowledge of grain diseases, weeds and pest control
  • knowledge of competitors' prices and services
  • knowledge of weather conditions, soil types and fertiliser requirements
  • good communication skills
  • sales and record-keeping skills
  • problem-solving skills
  • basic computer skills.