Nutritionists conduct research in the genetics, nutrition, reproduction, growth, and development of domestic farm animals.
- Study nutritional requirements of animals such as energy and crude protein requirements.
- Conduct research concerning animal nutrition or management to improve production efficiency and improve animal growth.
- Evaluate the chemical and nutritional value of feeds, feed supplements, grass and forage for commercial animals.
- Advise producers about new techniques of diet formulation to maximize growth, reproduction, health and/or performance
- Assess the relative nutritional and economic value of feeding systems.
- Research the effectiveness of different animal feed materials.
- Monitor feed formulations to meet quality performance and animal health standards.
- Provide professional advice on nutrition to producers, veterinarians and government bodies.
- Rationalize animal feed manufacturing techniques.
- Support commercial teams in producing and launching new products.
- Carry out sales and marketing strategies following the launch of a new product.
- Maintain expertise in nutritional trends and keeping up to date with regulatory changes.
Skills and Qualifications:
- May specialize in different fields of specific species, such as exotics/wildlife (bison, elk, yaks, or deer), or types such as dairy or beef cattle
- Advanced education in animal nutrition with a solid understanding and previous experience in the beef (or dairy) industry and markets, working directly with producers in nutritional management
- Excellent knowledge of ruminant nutrition and applicability to feed formulation, feed management and proper management and feed practices, and a passion for the livestock industry
- Ability to develop, service, and maintain positive relations with customers in agricultural-based market
- Excellent oral and written communication skills as well as good leadership qualities in applying these to training and teaching customers and related sales representatives
- Working knowledge of data and nutritional programs
A variety of environments are expected of ruminant nutritionists, from farm visits to office and laboratory environments.
Education and Training:
Animal nutritionists are required to have extensive training from college studies with courses in biology, chemistry, mathematics, animal physiology and anatomy, animal ethology and behaviour, animal nutrition, forage and feed production, food animal production, and feed ration formulation. Nutritionists are taught both computerized and hand-written methods of creating and balancing rations.
Most entry-level ruminant nutritionist positions require a Bachelor of Science degree with Animal Science, Biology or Biochemistry majors in the field of animal nutrition. Masters and PhD degrees are generally required for teaching and research positions at the collegiate level, however advanced nutritionist careers by feed companies are also offered.
Salary and Wages:
Salary ranges from $55,000 to $70,600 per annum.