About Agricultural Aviation

Become an Ag Pilot

Being an ag pilot is one of the most exciting jobs in aviation. It requires tremendous skill and precision and takes a significant amount of training. If you are interested in becoming an ag pilot, NAAA offers a program called Compaass Rose, a series of education sessions in which veteran ag pilots introduce potential recruits to the world of aerial application. Several articles are provided on the menu to the left to give you more information about the industry.

Facts About the Aerial Application Industry


  • There are approximately 1,350 aerial application businesses in the United States and 1,430 non-operator pilots.
  • Of those 1,350 businesses, 94% of the owners are also pilots.
  • NAAA represents more than 1,800 members.
  • According to NAAA records, aerial application operations are located in 46 states—all but Alaska, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.


About Agricultural Aviation

Agricultural aviation is an important part of the overall aviation and agriculture industries. The industry consists of small businesses and pilots that use aircraft to aid farmers in producing a safe, affordable and abundant supply of food, fiber and biofuel. Aerial applicators protect forestry and play an important role in protecting the public by combating mosquitoes carrying West Nile Virus, encephalitis and other diseases.

Aerial Application 101 Presentation

NAAA is pleased to provide members with a presentation that provides an overview of the ag aviation industry and the vital role aerial applicators play in helping to produce a safe, affordable and abundant supply of food, fiber and biofuel. We encourage members to use the PowerPoint presentation as one of many tools in educating the public about the industry and the intricacies that make us a highly regarded partner in production agriculture.

Importance of Aerial Application on Cotton

Learn more about the symbiotic relationship between agricultural aviation and cotton in "The Cotton Connection."

Citrus: Small Niche Market Facing Big Problems

Agricultural aviation plays a small but important role in the production of citrus fruits, which are a welcome addition to the American diet during the fall, winter and spring months. Although oranges, tangerines, tangelos, grapefruit, lemons and limes are grown commercially in four states, Florida is by far the largest producer in the U.S., providing 7.5 million tons in 2004–2005. In that same year, California grew only 3.3 million tons, Texas .33 tons and Arizona just .12 tons.

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