An introduction to Agribusiness management

Agribusiness management offers a plethora of opportunities


Top institutes like IIM-A and domain-focussed ones such as IRMA and Anand Agricultural University report 100 per cent placement.

Over a considerable period of time, agriculture has evolved into agribusiness and has become a vast and complex system that reaches beyond the farm to include all those who are involved in bringing food and fibre to consumers.

An overview
Agribusiness includes not only those who cultivate the land but also the people and firms that provide inputs (seed, chemicals, credit, etc), process the output (milk, grain, meat, etc.), manufacture the food products, and transport and sell food products to consumers (restaurants, supermarkets).

The agribusiness system has undergone a rapid transformation as new industries have evolved and traditional farming operations have grown larger and more specialized. At the same time, the agriculture input sector is evolving; a similar evaluation is taking place – commodity processing and food manufacturing moving off the farm.

The term, agribusiness, was first introduced by Davis and Goldberg in 1957. It represents a three-part system made up of (i) the agricultural input sector, (ii) the production sector and (iii) the processing-manufacturing sector. To capture the full meaning of the term, it is important to visualize these sectors as interrelated parts of a system where the success of each part depends heavily on the proper functioning of the other two.

In a nutshell, agribusiness management encompasses many aspects of the economy – agricultural producers, businesses that provide supplies and services to producers (including cooperatives), businesses that add value to agricultural products, and those that facilitate the marketing of agricultural products to an ever-growing marketplace.

Key institutes
With agribusiness management becoming a prospective career option, an increasing number of institutes are coming up with related programs. Some of the famous management institutes offering agribusiness management courses are IRMA (Programme in Rural Management), IIM Ahmedabad (Post-graduate Programme in Agricultural Business Management), National Institute of Agricultural Extension Management (PGDM-ABM and Post Graduate Diploma in Agricultural Extension Management), and Indian Institute of Plantation Management Bangalore (PGDM-PGP-ABPM).

Eligibility for PGP or PGDM in agribusiness management

have one-two specifications, the eligibility to get admitted in agribusiness management courses in top institutes remains more or less identical. It is a two-year program. The candidate must hold a bachelor or master degree in agriculture sciences or in agriculture-related disciplines with at least 50% marks or equivalent CGPA. The candidate will have to clear AICTE-approved MBA entrance exams or institute-specific entrances, to be followed by group discussion and personal interview.

Course fees
The course fee varies for various institutes. In IIM-A, the course fee for the 2012-14 batch was around Rs 7,40,000. In Indian Institute of Plantation Management Bangalore, the tuition fee is around Rs 2,50,000, while in IRMA, the fee stands at Rs 4,00,000. National Institute of Agricultural Extension Management (MANAGE) charges a course fee of Rs 3,00,000 for the two-year course. So, barring IIM-A, the upper limit of fees in most other institutions are around Rs 4,00,000. In all the institutes, extra charges will have to be paid for mess, library, laptops, personal expenses on travel, clothes and laundry.

A student in agribusiness will learn to manage companies which process, market, and merchandise agricultural products to consumers. He must explore business concepts and economic principles, and should have knowledge and skill in management, marketing, and finance with an emphasis on specialized requirements of the agribusiness sector. Courses leading to a degree/diploma in agribusiness include accounting, agribusiness management, agricultural marketing, price analysis, finance, farm & ranch management, and quantitative analysis tools, along with courses in production agriculture.

Placements & salary
Top institutes like IIM-A and domain-focussed ones such as IRMA and Anand Agricultural University report 100 per cent placement. Big corporate, government agencies and companies across sectors visit their campuses. According to placement report of IRMA for its 2010-12 batch, Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation Limited, ITC, Metro Cash & Carry, NDDB, Yes Bank, Mother Dairy Fruit & Vegetable Limited, Noida, IDBI Bank and TCS are some of the big organization that recruited its students. The average salary stands at Rs 8-8.5 lakh per annum.

Careers in agribusiness are varied from farming or ranching to commodity broker, food broker, loan officer, marketing researcher/specialist, product analyst, purchasing agent, statistician, and wholesaler.

Stay tuned to for more in-depth analysis of management courses.

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  • Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Ahmedabad

    Location: Ahmedabad

    Contact No.: +91-79-66323456 / 26308357

    Email ID:

    Address: Vastrapur,Ahmedabad 380015, Gujarat, INDIA, +91-79-66323456 / 26308357

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    School Snapshot

    IIMA has evolved from being Indias premier management institute to a notable international school of management in just four decades.

    It all started with Dr. Vikram Sarabhai and a few spirited industrialists realising that agriculture, education, health, transportation, population control, energy and public administration were vital elements in a growing society, and that it was necessary to efficiently manage these industries.

    The result was the creation of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad in 1961 as an autonomous body with the active collaboration of the Government of India, Government of Gujarat and the industrial sectors.

    It was evident that to have a vision was not enough. Effective governance and quality education were seen as critical aspects.

    From the very start the founders introduced the concept of faculty governance: all members of the faculty play an important role in administering the diverse academic and non academic activities of the Institute. The empowerment of the faculty has been the propelling force behind the high quality of learning experience at IIMA.

    The Institute had initial collaboration with Harvard Business School. This collaboration greatly influenced the Institutes approach to education. Gradually, it emerged as a confluence of the best of Eastern and Western values.

  • Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Lucknow

    Location: Lucknow

    Contact No.: (91-0522) 2734101 - 120, (91-522) 2734101-120, 3044980 -89

    Email ID:

    Address: Indian Institute of Management,Prabandh Nagar, Off Sitapur Road,Lucknow - 226 013.

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    School Snapshot

    Situated at the outskirts of the historic and culturally rich city of Lucknow, the Indian Institute of Management (IIML), was established in 1984, by the Government of India, as a national level school of excellence in management science.

    IIMLs mission is to be a global, socially conscious and integrated school of management, towards management development, both in India and abroad.

    Towards this, IIML undertakes a diverse range of academic activities and interventions aimed at creation, dissemination, and application of management knowledge and practices. These include the Post Graduate Programme; the Fellow Programme; the Management Development Programme; Research Programmes; and Consulting Programmes. IIML is also entering into collaborative arrangements with leading business schools and research centres in India, Europe, Canada, South and Southeast Asia.

    The Institute has state-of-the-art computing and class-room facilities, supported by an extensive library of books, journals, films, and databases. IIML academic programmes are fully residential. The serene and pollution free campus is well equipped to meet all the essential requirements of its residents.


    Location: Bengaluru / Bangalore

    Contact No.: +91-80-23212767, 23211716

    Email ID:,

    Address: Jnana Bharthi Campus, Post. Malathalli, Bangalore-560 056

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    School Snapshot

    In November 1993, the institute was registered as an autonomous educational institution of higher learning, under the Karnataka Society Registration Act. It is jointly sponsored by the plantation sector and the Commodity Boards of India viz. Coffee Board, Tea Board, Rubber Board, Spices Board and the Plantation Associations viz. United Planters` Association of Southern India (UPASI) and Indian Tea Association (ITA). The Institute is today a centre of excellence which acts as a `think tank` and an intellectual resource base for the plantation and associated agri-business and commodity sector. It is an exclusive sectoral school of management based on a new model of intensive institute-industry interaction.
  • Symbiosis Institute of International Business (SIIB) Pune

    Location: Pune

    Contact No.: 020 - 229343 14

    Email ID:

    Address: Symbiosis Infotech Campus, Plot No. 15, Rajiv Gandhi Infotech Park, MIDC, Hinjewadi, Pune - 411 057, Maharashtra

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    School Snapshot

    Located in Pune Infotech Park, The Symbiosis Institute of International Business (SIIB), was established in 1992. Formerly known as the Symbiosis Institute of Foreign Trade (SIFT) it is an integral part of the Symbiosis International University. It is strategically placed, surrounded by some of India`s largest multinational companies viz. Wipro, Infosys, Cognizant, TATA Technologies and many others.