Goodery Garden - Head Grower
Goodery C.I.C. is an online organic grocery marketplace and community interest company. We connect local farmers, ethical businesses and conscious consumers. Together we want to redesign the local food value chain here in East Anglia to account for the societal and environmental costs that result from our current food habits. We do this with zero emissions and as little waste as possible.
We’ve started the Goodery Market Garden because we want to back the next generation of organic farmers. When we started this, we came to realise that access to capital, land and market was a major blocker for many new growers. That’s why we’ve taken the step to cultivate some previously unused land on the lovely Organic Ash Farm in Bintree.
Working together, we can increase the demand for local, organically grown food by increasing consumer access; and strengthening the supply chain of organic food by giving local growers the market confidence to grow more organic food, encouraging connections between consumers and producers.
We currently pack and deliver over 200 boxes per week and we want to grow steadily over the next 3-5yrs, at the same time as having a greater proportion of our boxes filled with our own produce. We, and the customers value the freshness and goodness that the Goodery Garden brings!
We are taking on a Head Grower, to run the Goodery Garden, which will be in its third growing year. We grow over 50 types of vegetables, salads, herbs and edible flowers for our veg box scheme and for local restaurants.
It’s an opportune moment for a grower to come in to develop the market garden and bring their own skills, ideas and capabilities, not just to the garden but the future of Goodery.
We have ambitious plans to build on the successes of our current Head Grower Jen, who has set up and taken the Garden through two growing seasons, and seek someone who is passionate about designing the garden to its next level, increasing productivity, and developing a team of workers with us. The ideal candidate will be able to take on the growing plan and adapt it to their strengths and Goodery’s resources, as well as working with volunteers and trainees. The role also involves work to improve the functioning of the site, including improving irrigation, putting up new infrastructure - for which there is a budget. We are aiming to build strong links between the wider Goodery community and the market garden through volunteering and open days in 2024.
This is a long-term opportunity.
Application deadline: 1st December 2023 - 5pm
Interviews: w/c 4th December 2023
Start Date: ASAP in 2024
Details of the role
Hours: Negotiable - from 3-5 days/week
Salary: from £12.50 per hour
Responsible to: the Company Directors (Josh and Matti)
Responsible for: Assistant/Volunteers/trainees as appropriate
Overall Purpose: To manage the Goodery Garden in the sustainable production of vegetables for a certified Organic box scheme and local restaurants.
Head Grower Job Description
The main function of the job is to set-up and run a productive, Organic market garden for Goodery C.I.C. The Grower will have the skills required to manage the production and harvest of vegetables at the Goodery Garden to supply to Goodery’s Organic veg boxes and local restaurants. The customer service, buying from other farms, and distribution is taken care of so this is really a grower role.
There is a level of flexibility in the role design: we want the role that works for the grower’s strengths, skills and ambition. We currently have a trainee/assistant position and the right candidate should be open to managing and training a small team positively and enthusiastically
- Create the site and planting plans – developing and managing them accordingly and to budget
- Managing all areas of production from propagation through harvest
- Managing growing spaces, equipment and facilities
- Ordering seeds / horticulture sundries / tools as required
- Creating a weekly plan of tasks, priorities and responsibilities for the team.
- Planning and overseeing the harvest and ensuring quality control. Training and supporting the harvest team
- Planting and maintaining the polytunnel crops, field vegetables, salad leaves, green manures and perennial plants
- Monitoring irrigation, ventilation, pest and disease management and composting
- Development and delivery of soil management plan
- Preparing for and maintaining Soil Association accreditation
- Predicting weekly harvest availability and selling produce
- Working with chefs and Goodery warehouse team to coordinate weekly orders
- Weighing, grading and packing produce
- Loading van, unloading into Goodery warehouse and occasional deliveries
- Manage the admin and record keeping of the harvest and yields
Working with others
- Providing leadership, management, and instruction to the Market Garden team
- Recruiting staff, dealing with inductions, appraisals and other personnel issues
- Developing a team appropriate to the garden's needs, whilst maintaining focus of a productive market garden
- Recruit and manage contractors/sessional workers as required
- Hosting and supporting volunteers as agreed
- Working within a mentorship framework
- Working within a learning and skills development framework
- A passion for sustainable food production, and a desire to pursue a livelihood in it.
- At least two years experience of working on a food growing site
- Good people skills, friendly, welcoming temperament
- Gardening qualification Level 2 or above (or demonstrate equivalent horticulture knowledge)
- Ability to supervise and explain tasks to the team including trainees/volunteers
- Happy to work outdoors throughout the year
- Ability to carry out shared tasks and work within a team
- Ability to work on own initiative, prioritise tasks and work to deadlines
- Ability to run a budget
- Commitment to and understanding of the aims of Goodery
- Have a car and can drive
- Knowledge of land management
- Experience of running budgets, keeping financial records and target setting
- Experience of organic certification or equivalent
- Experience of using machinery (rotavator/ walking tractor/ tractor)
- Award in Education in Training - Qualification or experience of delivering training
- Ability to construct and ‘fix stuff’!
How to apply:
Please send a CV and a covering letter demonstrating how you meet the requirements of the role and the person specification to email@example.com. A call to discuss any aspect of the job further would be welcomed (01603 363806).