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Head Cheesemaker (Shelburne Farms)

Organization Shelburne Farms
Location 1611 Harbor Road
Shelburne, VT 05482

Key Responsibilities

  • Manage the cheddar cheesemaking operation
    • Oversee daily cheese production, including managing daily record keeping, inventory needs, and systems to increase efficiency.
    • Co-manage the Food Safety Plan with the Cheese Team Leader. Verify all documents related to cheesemaking, including Daily Make Sheets, Cleaning Sheets and Pre/Post Op Cleaning Checklists, and overall ensure that the creamery is fulfilling the requirements of our HACCP plan.
    • Manage weekly production schedule and staffing.
    • Make cheese, typically 2-4 times a week, and work closely with cheesemakers to manage production during the other days of the week (cheese is made 7 days).
    • Maintain consistency amongst the cheesemaking staff and communicate changes in standard operating procedures.
    • Train new cheesemakers and cheesemaking assistants.
    • Train new staff in cleaning and sanitation, Good Manufacturing Practices, and other areas of food safety.
    • Manage daily testing of cheese to determine the initial grade for each batch. This includes accurate laboratory testing and records of pH, moisture content, salt content, and antibiotic testing.
  • Manage inventory of cheesemaking ingredients and supplies and minimize expenses through efficiency and purchasing decisions.
  • As point of contact for Dairy, work with Dairy Manager to ensure the production of high quality and safe milk, and coordinate closely with dairy staff to identify seasonal changes in the milk in order to change cheesemaking targets.
  • Manage maintenance of creamery equipment and the Preventative Maintenance Program, and as contact with Buildings and Grounds staff, coordinate with Buildings and Grounds Manager on repairs and hiring outside contractors.
  • Key participant in the tasting and grading program throughout the aging process
    • Work closely with the Tasting and Grading Program Coordinator to track progress through an initial five-month tasting and then identify future tastings based on needs. Connect data from grading and tasting to daily production targets and make changes as needed.
    • Work closely with Processing Coordinator and Cheese Team Manager to connect data from the Tasting and Grading Program to processing needs. Assist in managing the cheese inventory and identify batches for certain markets and customers.
  • Research and implement new procedures and/or equipment to enhance: cheese quality, flavor, and yield.
  • Point person for cheesemaking related interviews, tours and programming, and requests from other departments involving cheesemaking. This includes participating in marketing and outreach activities on and off the farm such as demos and farmers’ markets as needed.
  • Assist cheese processing, packaging and shipping when time available, including cutting, waxing, packaging, and labeling cheese (typically 1-2 times a week).
  • Co-manage the cheesemaking budget with Cheese Team Manager.
  • Perform other work as necessary to support the Farm in satisfying guest and customer needs, including sales support and Farm function activities.

Physical factors / working conditions:

  • This is a leadership position that requires approximately 40-45 hours per week, 5 days a week, including one weekend day, and on-call duties for emergencies and staff shortages
  • Dependability, cleanliness and attention to detail are essential
  • Position requires significant physical strength & endurance; ability to lift up to 60 lbs. and 40+ lbs. multiple times; work in hot and cold environments such as coolers and make rooms
Qualifications & Requirements: 

We are looking for an experienced cheesemaker with significant expertise in all aspects of cheesemaking and compliance with modern food safety systems, who can very quickly come up to speed leading our Shelburne Farms cheddar production. This person will need to be extremely detail oriented, be a good communicator, a natural planner and manager of staff, and be committed to cheesemaking and our extraordinary educational farm.

We will also consider a candidate who embodies all the same personal and work characteristics described above, is a quick learner, and has a strong desire to become an expert cheesemaker and leader at Shelburne Farms. If you are not now a cheesemaker, please tell us why you are that special one.

Date Posted October 2nd, 2017
Deadline Open until filled
# of Positions Available 1
Categories Food Production
Type Full Time
How to Apply Please email or mail cover letter and resume to: Maddy Born,, Shelburne Farms, 1611 Harbor Road, Shelburne, VT 05482

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