Vegetable Farm Manger
Cedar Circle Farm and Education Center, Inc.
225 Pavillion Road
East Thetford, VT 05043
Join the Cedar Circle team and contribute to our local food system by producing sustainably grown, organic produce on a farm that is dedicated to our natural environment, community engagement, education, research and the well being of our staff!
ABOUT CEDAR CIRCLE FARM AND EDUCATION CENTER
Cedar Circle Farm and Education Center is a certified organic vegetable and berry farm with a farmstand, education center, research team, cafe, commercial kitchen and retail nursery center.
Our organization has a deep commitment to developing regenerative agriculture practices for our annual vegetable and flower production farm and to educating consumers about the need to support farms who are committed to growing food in a manner that improves and nourishes the soil. We are looking for a friendly, detail oriented team member to manage our vegetable and fruit production, collaborate on research projects, work with our partner organizations, deepen our connection to our community and contribute to the well being of our staff and organization.
The Vegetable Production Manager leads all aspects of Cedar Circle’s farm operations with primary focus on planning, implementing, organizing and supervising all vegetable and fruit production work. The person in this position identifies seasonal and weekly farm priorities and develops seasonal and weekly plans to ensure field cultivation, planting, irrigation, weeding, and harvests are successfully performed throughout the growing season while keeping detailed records for both planning and farm certifications. This position also plays a critical role in facilitating effective communication throughout the farm team, building our organizational family, and collaborating on research, educational, and community building opportunities.
Team coordination – coordinate, train and supervise daily tasks of Cedar Circle’s vegetable team, including:
- Clearly communicate and delegate weekly and daily priorities to the field team
- Train production team members in performance of all farm duties including planting, hand weeding, hoeing, harvesting, pruning, watering, etc.
- Set reasonable work pace for crew members and work with individuals to improve their focus, technique, safety and efficiency
- Act as a point of contact to answer production questions as they develop throughout the day from production and other team members
- Help to establish a positive, educational and nurturing work environment for all members of the team
- Promptly address any staffing issues that may be arise within the team
- Relay relevant information regarding team performance and questions to farm management
Crop Production – Oversee production in close collaboration with the farm team leads. Responsible for planning, coordinating and ensuring completion of the following:
- Field Planting
- Ensure timely planting of field crops ensuring the health of transplants
- Coordinate the preparations of fields and beds for field planting in relation to field planting schedules and weekly workflows
- Field Cultivation
- Initial tillage and field preparation for seeding, transplanting, and cover cropping
- Weed management, both mechanical and manual.
- All hands-on aspects of season extension and pest prevention through the use of cultural, biological, and pest deterrent practices in the field
- Management of irrigation infrastructure and materials, including storage, inventory, repair, and upkeep
- schedule irrigation and ensure delivery based on crop needs, planting dates, and harvest and cultivation schedules
- Harvest operations
- Schedule, train and pace crop harvest in collaboration with team leads
- perform in the field quality control of product being harvested and communicate farm quality standards to field crew
- communicate harvest nuances to field crew and management team as needed to ensure a smooth operation
- Train and ensure quality control in the Processing Area
Farm Planning and Management – In collaboration with team Leads
- Assist in establishment of weekly field production priorities and the development of weekly work schedules
- Perform regular field walks to stay in touch with needed field projects, crop growth, and plant health in coordination with team Leads and Research team
- Guide crop planning efforts and develop organization systems and documents specific to production, team management and team training
- Determine land use and crop rotation strategy in coordination with Research and Development team, Annual and Perennial team, and Director of Agriculture
- Map all producing fields in detail based on sales and department needs
- Evaluate and purchase all seed, planting stock, amendments and supplies in coordination with other team members
- Develop and revise seeding plans
- Devise nutrient management plan based on crop needs and soil tests
- With key staff (production leads), develop daily production plan and convey and answer questions concerning the daily plan at the morning meeting and to other departments as needed
- Foster strong interdepartmental relationships and provide communication channels as needed to deliver production department information to other staff as needed
Sales & Budgeting- Evaluation and planning to meet department and organizational financial goals
- Conduct audit of production by sales channels
- Compare data with five-year history to track progress
- Review and project Vegetable and Operations (as related to production needs) departmental budget needs
- Strategize farm production scale to maintain customer base, meet needs of local community and organizational financial goals
- Track and code all production inputs
Other Farm Duties
- Train and work with Processing Area Lead (PAL) in processing area (PA) duties and record keeping
- Train and work with Veg Production Lead to ensure proper knowledge and skills in fulfilling their duties
- Staff training as necessary to ensure coverage of all critical roles in absence of department Manager or Leads
- Ensure record keeping is performed accurately to ensure all necessary data is tracked for organic certifications, food safety records, pesticide applications, staff safety and planning purposes
- Evaluate department needs and hire seasonal and full time staff in coordination with team Leads and Director of Agriculture
- Participate in educational activities or events as required and pre-arranged by Education Program Manager
- Coordinate and communicate with retail farmstand team on new crops, farmstand displays, appropriate storage of crops
- Coordinate and communicate with Kitchen manager on product availability and storage
- Collaborate with Research team on projects and implementation plans and provide guidance and oversight of Vegetable team staff in the implementation of research projects, as pre arranged with Research team
- Establish system for wholesale customer orders, inquiries, invoicing, communication and communicate with all staff and established wholesale customers
- Complete annual budget projections for Veg Department; monitor and adjust on a monthly basis with Executive Director/ Director of Agriculture
- Actively participating on management team and strategizing about larger scale plans for the farm
- Serve as active member of management team committees as assigned
- Complete department specific portions of annual application and inspection
- Devise and implement successful organic pest control program
- Work to continually improve overall farm soil health
- Set and maintain the highest farm produce quality standards
- Execute best practices involving food safety
- Participate in farm tours and speaking engagements, representing Cedar Circle Farm and Education Center in a professional manner
- Coordinate with our partner organizations and develop appropriate systems for incorporating partner production in ways that support the CCFEC mission and build partner relationships
- Coordinate and work with other departments on the implementation of key projects when labor needs arise
- At least five seasons previous vegetable farming experience
- Small engine operation and experience operating tractors and implements
- Competence delivering clear directions to field team and project supervision experience
- At least three years experience managing a farm and production team
- Excellent time management skills
- Consistent attention to detail
- Positive, approachable interpersonal skills and passion for mentoring new farmers
- Ability to take direction, ask for help/clarity, and give/accept constructive feedback on work and technique
- Clear, consistent communication skills
- Flexible, creative and able to perform well in diverse conditions and under pressure
- Ability to work for long durations in inclement weather – standing, sitting, bending over, lifting or kneeling
- Ability to work hours in excess of 40 hours per week, especially during peak periods
- Occasional weekend hours required
This is a full-time year-round position. The Vegetable Production Manager is a salaried position with benefits including health benefits (100% of the group premium is employer paid), paid time off, fresh produce, and a 20% discount to our farm stand.
Pay starts at $50,000 per year, depending on qualifications and experience.
Temporary (1-2 months) on-site studio housing is potentially available to allow time for transition to the Upper Valley.
Cedar Circle Farm is an EEO/AA employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, disability, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
Please visit our website for the full job description and employment application.