Harbinger Farm, Seasonal Apprentice


Company: Harbinger Farm
Location: Myrtle Creek
Compensation: $14-17/hour DOE
Employment Type: Full-Time, Internship / Apprentice, Part-Time
Job Categories: Agriculture
Region: Southern
Date Posted: January 9, 2024

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POSITIONS AVAILABLE: 1 FULL TIME (30-40 hrs/week) or 2 PART TIME (20-30 hrs/week)

APPROX START/END DATES: April – October

NO ON-FARM HOUSING OFFERED

VEHICLE REQUIRED

 

ABOUT THE FARM

Harbinger Farm currently raises annual vegetable, fruit and herb crops–a versatile assortment of 70+ items over the course of the growing season. Value-added products are also produced when time and quantity permits, including cottage foods, vegetable ferments and dehydrated goods. We vend at two farmers markets, offer a 25-week CSA, and wholesale to a local restaurant.

The only time mechanization is utilized is during bed-prep when a walk-behind tractor does some mowing, shallow tillage and bed-shaping. Otherwise weeding, cultivation and harvest is all completed by hand. Field blocks are cover cropped over-winter and crop families are rotated between seasons. All transplants are started from seed in a propagation nursery on-site and a total of 6,500 sq.ft. of field tunnel space will be utilized for row crop cultivation in 2024.

Owners, Matt and Lucie, serve as the core farm crew. An employee would fill an assistant position to them in almost all necessary field tasks with the potential of facilitating both marketing and distribution of produce during peak season.

 

ABOUT THE JOB

Our seasonal employee(s) would receive a relatively well-rounded hands-on experience, encompassing most aspects of small-scale produce farming. The bulk of their hours logged will be spent on field production-related tasks, including but not limited to seeding, planting, cultivation, irrigation, harvesting, washing/packing and taking inventory. Heavy equipment usage is limited; however, an employee would certainly be trained to use the BCS walk-behind tractor, if interested.

Being that we are operating a newly-established farm, there is much value to be gleaned from learning the progression of a small-scale farm in “real-time”. An employee would have the opportunity to actively engage as we grow our business, develop new systems, problem solve and overcome challenges for the first time, capturing a unique involvement that can only be enhanced by our varied previous farming experiences.

An employee should expect to work maximum hours in the given range (depending on full or part time) per week during peak season (May-September) and closer to the minimum hours in the range per week on the front and tail ends. Ideally, hours per day and days per week would be flexible depending on fluctuating needs. However, if a set schedule is preferred, that can also be arranged. On average, one should expect to complete 8-hour workdays. During peak season, the expected daily start time would be 8am. Time off should be requested as far in advance as possible, but at least two weeks prior. No more than three consecutive days off will be allowed during peak season (unless an exception is agreed upon during the interview process).

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Applicants with previous farm experience preferred, but not required–as long as the desire to learn and motivation to excel is clearly present.

  • Outdoor physical work experience is a must–our summer daytime temps average between high 80s and low 100s.

  • Ability to comfortably lift and carry 50 lbs is required, accompanied by repeatedly bending, kneeling, squatting and standing throughout the day.

  • Adeptness at learning new skills while pertaining the ability to override previous learned experiences with newfound direction.

  • Exhibits attention to detail and thoughtful predictability.

  • Exercises strong listening, comprehension and communication skills.

  • Ambition to pursue a demanding lifestyle and arduous career path within an industry struggling against countless social and environmental challenges.

  • Appreciation for and respect of natural science and organic chemistry.

  • Practices a favorable attitude and a pragmatic outlook; is flexible, adaptable, open minded, down-to-earth and easy-going in nature.