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Orchard Manager

Position Overview

Orchard managers optimize production of orchard crops, such as kiwifruit, apples, and oranges. They maintain all assets professionally and aim to meet industry standards. They should be innovative thinkers to bring new products or practices to the company for the encouragement of better returns, such as higher yield. As such, the orchard manager should have a developed understanding of the orchard's fruit so that they can provide appropriate advice. They also need to have excellent leadership skills to manage many resources and other orchard staff. They should communicate with staff members on a regular basis, letting them know the primary objectives of the day and what activities need to be completed. This may involve coordinating or directing irrigation, pesticide application, or harvesting activities. Orchard managers should monitor workers to assist with problems as they arise. They need to keep to a strict budget and help ensure production levels are as they should be. Orchard managers need to consider unexpected circumstances, such as unfavorable weather conditions, and should develop contingency plans accordingly. They may also help coordinate the packing house and maintenance activities.

Orchard Manager Duties

  • Communicate with, and direct orchard staff
  • Plan what the targeted production levels are
  • Implement new and improved practices
  • Keep up-to-date with industry standards and techniques used
  • Train staff members
  • Manage irrigation, pesticide, and harvesting activities
  • Ensure a safe environment is created for all workers
  • Develop and keep to a reasonable budget
  • Implement safety regulations
  • Manage staff disputes
  • Complete project sheets

Typical Employers

  • Fruit Orchards such as:
  • Apple
  • Orange
  • Grapefruit
  • Cherry
  • Date
  • Peach
  • Pear
  • Tangerine
  • Nut Orchards such as:
  • Almond
  • Butternut
  • Cashew
  • Chestnut
  • Chocolate
  • Coconut
  • Coffee

Required Education and Training

Orchard managers should have a bachelor's degree in a related field, such as horticulture, botany, agronomy, or environmental science. They should also have some management or leadership experience as they will be in charge of other staff members. While orchard mangers will receive some on the job training, they should be familiar with the fruit that the orchard produces. Previous experience working at an orchard is beneficial. Some orchard managers are hired without a degree if they have enough relatable work experience.

Key Skills and Qualities

  • Good teamwork skills
  • Ability to manager others
  • Excellent decision making skills
  • Technical knowledge
  • Good written and verbal communication skills
  • Focused on problem solving
  • Results driven
  • Very organised
  • Good project management skills

Average Salary

An orchard manager makes an average salary of £25,000. The range is between £20,000 and £40,000, depending on experience level.