Ag Jobs and Careers in Greater Des Moines

Iowa Workforce Development findings show that the agriculture industry in Iowa accounts for 29.8% of employment, adding more than 4,800 jobs between 2010 and 2019.  

Careers in agriculture in Greater Des Moines (DSM) in central Iowa flourish, thanks to major employers, unique programs and innovative startups. 

The Iowa Department of Agriculture & Land Stewardship offers opportunities to work with local farmers in the ag industry, and places like the Corteva Agriscience and Lauridsen Group often have job opportunities that will help job seekers in the field build careers in agricultural science. Whether it’s crop research jobs, animal science jobs or a position as an ag technician, Des Moines, Iowa and its surrounding communities are where careers in agricultural science are plentiful. For farmers, other opportunities are available through the Iowa Agricultural Development Division including the Beginning Farmer Loan Program, the Beginning Farmer Tax Credit Program and more to make it easier for new farmers to get started in their ag career. 

Major Ag Companies in Des Moines, Iowa

As one of the best cities for ag jobs, Des Moines and its surrounding communities offer opportunities including ag engineering jobs, ag marketing jobs, ag sales jobs and more at the following major companies: 

  • Corteva Agriscience 
  • John Deere 
  • Kemin Industries 
  • Vermeer 
  • Lely 
  • Lauridsen Group 
  • Hy-Vee 

At Corteva Agriscience, a focus on technology helps to create products and profit through innovative solutions. The company works to find these solutions for seed productivity, crop protection and digital agriculture software, and hires through direct outreach and candidates applying for roles. You can join the Corteva Talent Network by uploading your resume to an online profile to receive related crop science and technology job opportunities and information. The company puts a big emphasis on improving the local community through its programs and events, too, making it a rewarding choice to grow your career. 

An agricultural career at John Deere is all about seeing the impact of new ag technology for the farm. John Deere supports hiring a diverse workforce — from military veterans to individuals with disabilities. John Deere also boasts many Employee Resource Groups to help build a more inclusive environment, including HOLA, a Hispanic/Latinx ERG, to N8V, a Native and Indigenous ERG, and many more. 

Have you heard about Hy-Vee Homegrown? For Midwest farmers, the Hy-Vee Homegrown program, which works with farmers within 200 miles of a Hy-Vee store, cutting out the middleman to bring produce into the store, is just one way the company supports local agriculture and farming in the region. 

In Pella, Iowa, Lely is a market leader for dairy producers worldwide. The company opened a new North American hub in Pella in 2022. The facility showcases Lely as a farming innovator and even amid challenging conditions, the company has seen 15% revenue growth and continues to meet the demand for Lely robots. A career at Lely, as the company celebrates 75 years in 2023, is a career focused on the future. 

Ag Job Training in Des Moines, Iowa

Kemin Industries offers internships and leadership development programs, including The Kemin Great Manager Program, which includes university courses, Kemin University, an online learning hub, and the Kemin Leadership Development Program, with department rotations, and more. 

Practical Farmers of Iowa aims to equip farmers to build not only strong farms, but vibrant communities. The organization’s Labor4Learning Trainers program allows you to get paid, on-the-job training with Iowa farmers during their growing season. Looking to learn about crop production, business development and more when it comes to farming and cultivating the land? Check out the Lutheran Services of Iowa Global Greens Incubator Farm in West Des Moines.  

Des Moines Public Schools offers an Environmental & Agricultural Science Academy through Central Campus for students to gain experience in agricultural business and horticultural careers. Developing talent in this area can lead to employment in the ag sector in the future. Other agribusiness education is offered at Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC), where 325 acres lends itself to student learning on the DMACC Farm. 

America’s Cultivation Corridor is here to support you, too, so connect at industry events or find co-working space near you at venues like Maple Studios in West Des Moines. Whether crop science jobs or a position as an ag technician are what you’re looking for, Des Moines and its surrounding communities offer a chance for you to secure your ideal career in agriculture. The InnoVenture Iowa Fund, launched in 2022, also helps support early-stage bioscience (and advanced manufacturing and IT, too!) startup companies gain traction so turning your ideas into innovation isn’t difficult here, either. 

Ready to build your ag career in Greater Des Moines? 

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