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Black Sheep Farm – Farm Manager: Maternity leave relief

Position: Farm Manager - Maternity leave relief
Type: paid plus lodging, produce, more (see below)
Organization: Black Sheep Farm
Location: Chesley, Bruce County, Ontario (near Owen Sound, Walkerton, Hanover)

Black Sheep Farm is hiring a full-time farm manager from May to October 2017 (~ 25 weeks). Farmer Brenda Hsueh is expecting her first child at the end of April and needs an experienced farmer to make sure the farm plan gets implemented for the year. Farm production includes a 1 acre market garden producing 30 weekly CSA packages, as well as a small flock of sheep which is intensively grazed. Market garden tasks will include soil blocking for seedlings, direct seeding, transplanting, weeding, wheel hoeing, row covering, harvest/cleaning/ packaging, delivery, irrigation set up and clean up, and tomato staking. Sheep tasks include daily checks and watering and portable electric fence set up on a regular (2-4 day) schedule. Brenda is hoping to be able to be in the field and pasture for various tasks as well, but cannot guarantee what new motherhood will be like!

Full-time work would include ~ 40 hours of work from Monday to Friday, with weekends mostly free. Your daily start and end times would be flexible, but should take into account tasks and weather conditions (harvest days start early to ensure optimum morning conditions before the heat of the day sets in). You would be compensated with $500 gross per week (minus required personal EI, CPP deductions), lodging, and produce from the farm. There is also some extra vegetable bed space in the market garden on which you could grow your own vegetables to sell at a farmers’ market of your choice (CSA harvest/delivery schedule permitting). Any such work would be on your own time and all revenue from such farmers’ market sales would be your own.

Benefits of living and working at Black Sheep Farm include a beautiful farm setting of rolling hills, open fields, woods, and walking trails. The beaches of Lake Huron at Port Elgin or Southampton are only a 30 minute drive away. There are also many trails in the area, including the Bruce Trail up to Tobermory. There is also a community of various diversified farmers in the area who meet up regularly to socialize and talk shop. While you would be implementing an existing farm plan, the experience would be extremely valuable to planning your own farming enterprise and Brenda would be willing to offer advice and planning help. She has worked on many farm business plans over the years and would also share her spreadsheet experience in planning out the various parts of a farm.

Requirements include 2+ years experience on a vegetable farm (organic, though not necessarily certified), a valid drivers’ license, and the ability to implement a farm plan with medium supervision. Having your own vehicle would also be an asset. Black Sheep Farm has been operating a market garden CSA for 8 seasons so has many systems in place. Planting quantities, dates, etc. will already have been planned and all seeds, supplies, equipment already on site. While Brenda would be open to suggestions and new ways of doing things, given the presence of a new baby, the status quo would likely be prioritized. There would be at least weekly instruction/discussion meetings and field walks.

Living conditions would include a private trailer with outdoor washroom facilities, with access to the main house for laundry, showers, and some shared meals.

Please email your resume, 3 references (at least one each work/personal) and a letter explaining why you would like to work at Black Sheep Farm to:
info mask justblacksheep.com*

To learn more about Black Sheep Farm, please check out the website at http://www.justblacksheep.com and/or its Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/justblacksheep.

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GoodWork ID: 37316       Date posted to GoodWork.ca: Jan 3 2017