This position reports directly to the owners of Champlain Orchards and the person will work closely with senior management.
Key areas of responsibility will be EcoApple certification, organization and oversight of pruning, planting, fertilizing, spraying, thinning, mowing, harvesting, and storage of fruit. The individual must possess a high level of practical orchard operation experience, entomology & tree fruit knowledge; and must enjoy and be familiar with equipment operation, physical hard work, and working outdoors year round. They must be self-motivated, enjoy teaching and leading staff, and be able to work weekends and nights on occasions.
Oversee advanced IPM scouting and analysis of result and planned action.
Ensure overall health of fruit trees including pruning, thinning, tree-spreading, spraying, fertilization, rodent and animal control throughout the orchards, and adhering to EcoApple standards.
Monitor daily/weekly weather reports via NEWA website, and ensure appropriate action is taken based on the weather and pest information.
Communicate quality and productivity expectations for the orchard managers and staff, monitor success, evaluate, and implement changes to improve quality and productivity.
Ensure implementation, adherence to, and reporting of GAP, GMP, EcoApple, and organic standards to ensure certifications are maintained.
Maintain proper Records and reporting of key data – i.e.; crop estimates, bud counts, and Integrated Pest Management.
Create and implement standard operating procedures for the departments.
Train and supervise the staff employed under the department.
Create and oversee opportunities for staff cross-training within the departments.
Attend weekly Managerial meetings with Owners.
Create a daily, weekly, and monthly work schedule for staff under their supervision.
Plan and lead public orchard tours and workshops.
Lead implementation of cutting edge modern orchard practices, techniques, and equipment.
Oversee the overall maintenance and care of all the various properties and all buildings located on them.
Make decisions about equipment use, maintenance, modification and procurement.
Ensure organization and proper storage of all tools and essential equipment and parts.
Oversee the overall mowing and maintenance of the orchard grounds, including brush chipping and mulching.
Oversee the harvesting of the fruit throughout the various seasons.
Ensure apples destined for cold storage arrive in a timely manner and are properly identified and entered in receiving computer system.
Plan, organize and oversee the ordering and planting of new fruit trees.
Research various ways to modernize/improve efficiency.
Oversee and ensure proper irrigation and drainage work installation and operation.
Ensure proper maintenance and installation of trellis.
Oversee maintenance and renovations of all buildings and surrounding grounds.
Oversee maintenance, repair, and replacement of all apple bins.
Ensure proper record keeping/guidelines for EcoApple certification and organic certification.
Attend various annual conferences and tours – such as: Cornell University, IFTA annual meeting/tour, EcoApple annual meeting.
Keep up to date on procedures pertaining to modern orchard maintenance thru periodicals, workshops, websites, and emails – such as those from Cornell University and NEWA.
Must possess a high level of practical orchard operation experience, entomology & tree fruit knowledge.
Must enjoy and be familiar with equipment operation, physical hard work, and working outdoors year-round.
Proficient IT, technical and numerical skills
Strong project management skills
Strong organizational and interpersonal skills
The ability to work under pressure and inspire/motivate a team of workers
The capacity to grasp concepts easily and think critically and creatively
Strong attention to detail
Superior communication and information dissemination skills
Strong negotiating and problem-solving skills
40 – 50 hours per week, on average.
Extended hours may be required to meet deadlines or introduce new systems.
Please apply to email@example.com and attach your current, relevant Resume, 3 professional references and a cover letter.