Agriculture has moved beyond simple farming to become a vast and complex system. It reaches far beyond the farm to include all of the steps involved in getting inputs onto the farm, as well as all of the steps after production, that get agricultural products from the farm to the consumers. Today, a vast number of agribusinesses play a role in the “agricultural value chain”. The value chain approach includes not only those that farm the land but also the people and firms that provide the inputs, process the outputs, manufacture the food, fiber and energy products, and wrap, transport and sell them to consumers.
The Agribusiness Management department focuses on agribusiness-related topics in teaching the necessary theoretical background and in organising a variety of practical activities. The courses offered by the department integrate and cover marketing, business planning, food quality management, value chain, farm management and other topics important to agribusiness management (see list of topics below). The department also provides students with the opportunity of engaging in a specialised research project during the 4th semester at NAEC. To deepen their theoretical academic and research studies, students make excursions to visit various actors in the value chain: e.g. private fruit-processing company, research farms, universities and other appropriate locales.
The main objective of the Agribusiness Management department at NAEC is to develop and build up the students’ practical knowledge, problem-solving and teaching skills. With these tools, NAEC graduates can improve agriculture education at Agricultural High Schools; and those specialised in Agribusiness Management will in addition be able to improve the management and productivity of small and medium agribusiness enterprises and value chains.
Specifically, NAEC graduates in the Agribusiness Management specialisation should be able to:
- Teach various aspects of marketing, agribusiness management and enterprise development; and in addition, to
- Apply the acquired knowledge and practical skills to run an agribusiness, develop a business plan, process commodities, analyse marketing, and collaborate with others; and
- Make use of the problem-solving skills integrated in the agribusiness value chain, from agricultural input supply, agricultural production, commodity processing, agribusiness marketing and food quality.
The Agribusiness Management department provides thirteen courses over the two years of studies at NAEC. The main topics of specialisation are:
- Farm Management
- Role of Farmer Organisation in Agri-Chains
- Food Quality Management
- Agriculture Marketing
- Agriculture Economics
- Post-harvest Management
- Fruits and Vegetables Processing
- Agriculture Value Chain Analysis and Development
- Agribusiness Planning
- Agribusiness student research project