Minto Island Growers is seeking applicants for the Field Production Assistant for the 2018 production season. This position requires and cultivates an extremely diverse skill set while providing the necessary tools and training to dig deeper into the mechanics of a working organic farm. Specific duties include seeding, tilling, cultivating, fertilizing, irrigating, and cover cropping. There is a strong emphasis on the operation of farm machinery, including trucks, trailers, and tractors, as well as specialized implements including mowers, discs, rototillers, under-cutters, seeders, grain drills and cultivation tools like sweeps, knives, basket and tine weeders. It is the Field Production Assistant’s responsibility, in cooperation with the Farm Owners and the Farm Manager, to properly monitor and manage the crops, both in the field and in the greenhouses, including keeping necessary records.
In addition to field responsibilities, a portion of every workweek is dedicated to working alongside the rest of the farm crew on regular tasks like transplanting, weeding, as well as harvesting, processing and packing for the CSA.
This position requires a comprehensive understanding of the various jobs that are necessary throughout the growing season, and to be able to anticipate and adapt to seasonal shifts. Creative problem solving is required daily, as is the ability to maintain an even-keeled disposition in the face of often difficult, yet rewarding, work. Being a small, tight-knit farm, MIG seeks people who thrive working alone as well as in groups, as the workweek invariably requires both. We also strive to build a team of diverse yet likeminded individuals who share a passion for sustainable agriculture and find fulfillment in meaningful work.
The average workweek consists of 8-11 hour days (40-55 hours per week) with occasional longer days expected during the peak production months of May through September. Regardless of experience, applicants must be highly motivated and focused on speed, efficiency, and quality of work. Vegetable production work is strenuous and physically demanding, and applicants must be confident in their ability to efficiently perform this work on a daily basis and throughout the production season. A positive and flexible attitude is a must.
Assistant Field Manager duties include (but are not limited to):
- Drive and operate a diversity of trucks, trailers, and other heavy machinery
- Operate tractors and implements to execute various field tasks.
- Cover cropping: Summer and winter, mowing, irrigation, field preparation, and seeding
- Operate and maintain field irrigation systems (drip tape, hand-lines, travellers, and wheel-line)
- Field monitoring: anticipation of tillage (primary and secondary), pest monitoring (insect and disease), and weed pressure
- Work with Farm Manager to complete seasonal and weekly farm plans, which include tillage schedules, weeding priorities/strategies, planting dates, fertilizing schedules, etc.
- Blueberry mowing and maintenance
- Keeping clear organization of the harvest tools and materials, as well as the shop and warehouses (together with the harvest manager)
- Participation in other farm tasks alongside the farm crew, including: Nursery and greenhouse work—seeding, up-potting, moving plants, greenhouse management; Field work—transplanting, weeding, trellising, pruning, pest control; Harvesting, processing, and packing produce.
- Potential larger role in helping manage greenhouses and other nursery projects
Minimum 2 years experience working with sustainable farming operation(s), including experience operating tractors
Ability to work collaboratively with Farm Owners and Farm Manager to create seasonal and weekly farm plans
Attention to detail and commitment to quality in one’s work
Be self-motivated, flexible, and able to take initiative
Capacity to adapt to new systems and situations as well as a penchant for creative problem solving
Work quickly and efficiently!
Ability to work both alone as well as in a team setting
Ability to perform strenuous physical labor on a daily basis
Ability to lift 50 lbs., adaptable to varying weather conditions
Clean driver’s license
Please send response to following questions and resume including 3 references and to firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. How did you hear about MIG and why are you interested in working here in particular?
2. What previous agricultural or horticultural experience have you had? (Please list the operations, duration, and any useful details such as CSA size etc.)
3. Describe any crop or nursery production experience you have had.
4. What do you plan to be doing in one year? Five years?
5. What goals would you like to accomplish while working as part of the farm crew at MIG? What kind of training are you looking for during your employment?
6. Please describe any physical limitations that might affect your ability to perform certain tasks. Many jobs require light to heavy lifting (50 lbs.), working in direct sun, repetitive grasping, and bending and kneeling. Severe hay fever or other allergies should also be considered. No application will be rejected because of a condition or impairment that, with reasonable accommodation, does not prevent performance of the work.
7. Have you ever had a job that was physically demanding and/or was physically repetitive? If so, what did you do? How would you rank your endurance when performing physically demanding jobs? 1 – 5 (1 = low, 5 = very high)
8. What do you think would be the most rewarding aspect of being on the Minto Island Growers Farm Crew?
9. Please describe any previous experience in retail or customer service.
10. Describe any previous experience with farm machinery and equipment
11. Do you practice any regular physical training, exercise, or sport? (running, yoga, dancing, swimming, etc.
12. Is there any additional info you would like to share about yourself?
Position open until filled.