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Raindance Organic Farm- Field Manager- near Ann Arbor, Michigan

Contact information
Farm Address:
2015 E. North Territorial Rd
Whitmore Lake, Michigan , 48189

Primary Contact: Kristen Muehlhauser
Primary Phone:
    Type:
Cell
    Number: 7347473099
    Email: RaindanceOrganic@gmail.com

Website: https://www.raindanceorganic.com/field-manager-application-2021

Website: https://www.instagram.com/raindanceorganicfarm/?hl=en

Internship information
General Farm Description: Raindance Organic Farm exists to serve our community by growing great organic produce and flowers, and by connecting children and adults with the beauty of nature and the gifts of wellness. For the 2021 season we are hiring a full-time field manager to join us in meeting this mission. The work you do will be essential to our farm operation, and you will see the meaningful impact you make as you take crops from seed to table. The work varies over the course of the season as the farm shifts from seeding and planting, to opening the CSA, and to harvesting and marketing. Our farm is a two-acre, certified organic vegetable and flower market garden following many of the practices described by JM Fortier, Curtis Stone, Richard Perkins, and other small farmers working to intensively grow food and live a meaningful life. We use a BCS tractor (walking tractor) for prepping beds, a Jang seeder for direct seeded crops, Farmer’s Friend tunnels with trellises for our heat-loving crops, and Tend software for planning and recordkeeping. We grow approximately 35 kinds of vegetables each season, and an additional 35 annual and perennial specialty cut flowers. Our farm produce goes out to the community through our on-farm CSA, the Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market, a farm cooperative, and two retail grocery spaces in town. We’re inspired by sustainable farming educators and are increasingly interested in experimenting with and transitioning to no-till farming in order to increase carbon sequestration and sustain healthier soil.

CRAFT Member Farm? No

Internship Starts: March 7, 2021 (somewhat flexible)
Internship Ends: October 16, 2021 (somewhat flexible)
Number of Internship Available: 1
Application Deadline: December 1, 2020
Minimum Length of Stay: 6 months

Internship Details:

Required qualifications:

Commitment to work full-time (35-45 hours/week) from approximately March 7- October 16, 2021. Dates may be negotiated by a few weeks if needed. Some hours are set (such as the days we host our Workshare members or go to market), and other hours are flexible.

Demonstrated ability to self-manage farm work to take a crop plan from seed to harvest— seeding, greenhouse work, transplanting, cultivating, scouting, harvesting, marketing

Effectively able to host CSA members, mentor interns, teach workshare members, and connect with customers at the farmer’s market— and generally enjoy it

Working knowledge of market garden infrastructure (hoophouses, seeders, BCS or similar tractor, irrigation, wash/pack, etc)

Ability to work in challenging weather conditions and lift full crates of vegetables

Knowledge of or willingness to learn national organic program standards, and desire to farm in a way that is compliant with the spirit and letter of the standards so as to grow excellent food, protect the land, and maintain organic certification

A strong desire to create a farm culture of inclusion, hospitality, curiosity, and hard work

Reliable, prompt, courteous with above average skills in listening and sharing

Loves sunshine, rain, hard work, sweat, and generally being outside

Current valid driver’s license

Desired qualifications:

Previous experience of one year or more running your own farm or working in a leadership role on a diverse vegetable and/or flower farm

Previous experience working with and around children, preferably in a garden or farm setting

Field Manager Responsibilities

Fulfill crop plan from seed to harvest. The 2021 season crop plan will be laid out during the winter off-season. The field manager will ensure crops are seeded, transplanted, trellised & pruned, and harvested as much as possible according to the crop plan and the weather. This work will be done by the field production manager, and also by the farm’s crew of interns and workshare CSA members.

Train and oversee the work of farm interns and workshare members. The farm will host 1-2 full-time interns for three month periods during the 2021 season. We also expect 8-12 workshare members to work on the farm about 3 hours each week. The field manager will greet team members each day, host a brief daily meeting, distribute tasks to crew members, train folks as necessary, ensure the crew has the tools, transplants, and knowledge they need to do the work, and be available to teach and answer questions as necessary.

Host Community Farm Project CSA during summer season. For our CSA members, the farm offers 8-12 items to harvest each week. During the 10 week season, the manager will survey the fields weekly, estimate crop availability, make a Harvest List and Harvest Map for members, write any instructions or special notes to members, and host the member harvest times. In a typical year these harvest times ran for three hours each on Thursdays and Sundays, and farmers greeted folks, answered questions, helped them find crops around the farm. During the 2020 COVID season, members visited from 7am-7pm during assigned time slots but the farm did not formally greet members or host them. In 2021 we are hoping to resume our group harvest time model and have the production manager man the welcome table and field entrance (possibly in collaboration with the interns) during the two 3-hour harvest times. Sundays also include a group potluck.

Harvest, wash, and pack for retail outlets. The farm’s three primary outlets for retail sales outside of the CSA are 1) the Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market, 2) Argus Farm Stop, and 3) the Washtenaw Organic Collaborative. In spring and fall, our produce and flowers are harvested, washed, and packed in various ways for the above outlets. In summer, a great deal of our produce is harvested by CSA members themselves.

Communication and division of labor. The field manager will work in collaboration with the farm manager, communicating weekly about crop updates, crew updates, sales updates, and short-term and mid-term planning. The field manager will not be responsible for fielding emails and communications with CSA members, creating budgets, crew scheduling, ordering supplies, accounting, or payroll.

Compensation

Salary. Monthly salary of $3000. The farm uses a payroll system.

PTO. The field manager will receive days of paid time off available for vacation, sick days, etc. Details will be discussed during interview.

Stipend for health insurance. We believe health care is a universal human right, and indeed the farm exists to be a form of preventative medicine. The farm will offer a monthly stipend to assist with health insurance costs.


Educational Opportunities: This position requires previous farming experience, but there is always more to learn! If you have a goal to begin your own farm in the future, we are happy to share our experience in market gardening production, how we developed our mission and vision, how to develop a business plan, and all that we have learned in the experience of founding a first-generation farm.

Skills Desired: Required qualifications: Commitment to work full-time (35-45 hours/week) from approximately March 7- October 16, 2021. Dates may be negotiated by a few weeks if needed. Some hours are set (such as the days we host our Workshare members or go to market), and other hours are flexible. Demonstrated ability to self-manage farm work to take a crop plan from seed to harvest— seeding, greenhouse work, transplanting, cultivating, scouting, harvesting, marketing Effectively able to host CSA members, mentor interns, teach workshare members, and connect with customers at the farmer’s market— and generally enjoy it Working knowledge of market garden infrastructure (hoophouses, seeders, BCS or similar tractor, irrigation, wash/pack, etc) Ability to work in challenging weather conditions and lift full crates of vegetables Knowledge of or willingness to learn national organic program standards, and desire to farm in a way that is compliant with the spirit and letter of the standards so as to grow excellent food, protect the land, and maintain organic certification A strong desire to create a farm culture of inclusion, hospitality, curiosity, and hard work Reliable, prompt, courteous with above average skills in listening and sharing Loves sunshine, rain, hard work, sweat, and generally being outside Current valid driver’s license Desired qualifications: Previous experience of one year or more running your own farm or working in a leadership role on a diverse vegetable and/or flower farm Previous experience working with and around children, preferably in a garden or farm setting

Meals: Our summer CSA has a weekly potluck on Sunday nights that you are welcome to join, but no other meals are provided. We believe everyone who works on the farm should receive a share of all the organic goodness, and you are always welcome to enjoy the produce and flowers.

Stipend: Yes. The field manager salary is $3000/month in this full-time position of 35-45 hours/week. Paid time off and a monthly stipend to help pay for health insurance is included in the position. And of course, the field manager is welcome to enjoy the produce and flowers of the farm!

Housing: No. We do have local connections to help you find inexpensive housing (shared or private) in or near Ann Arbor if desired.

Preferred method of Contact: email