Box Scheme Manager - Woodlands Farm, Kirton, Lincolnshire
08 July 2013
We are looking for an enthusiastic person with drive and creativity to develop our award-winning box scheme based at Kirton, near Boston, Lincolnshire. In this newly created position you will play a key role in developing and expanding our successful box scheme and the Woodlands Farm brand.
About The Box Scheme
We set up our Box Scheme as a pilot project in 2000, our idea being to supply people living locally with fresh, affordable organic produce. This is still our aim today. We grow, pick, pack and deliver 85% of the vegetables ourselves. More recently we’ve added our own fruit and meat (beef, lamb, pork and turkeys) to our range, together with eggs and numerous other items such as biodynamic chickens, pasta and breakfast cereals. We also include flowers and even poems written and inspired by life on the farm. It’s hard work but very rewarding to have such a direct link with our customers. So much more satisfying than supplying large retailers.
The Box Scheme has been a wonderful source of employment. At a time when jobs have been lost in farming it has created around 15 full-time positions at Woodlands. It has also helped foster what might be called a family atmosphere on the farm. I often think these are consequences of moving away from a farming system based on quantitative values to qualitative ones. At the heart of the Box Scheme is a wish to reconnect people with the land and to foster affection for it. You see the raw beauty of a field or the whisker of hare and you want to celebrate them. I like to feel our boxes carry the signature of such momentous things as well as food we can all enjoy.
Woodlands Farm lies on the fertile Lincolnshire fens in an area known as South Holland. Situated five miles south-east of Boston the farm consists of level silt fields which were reclaimed from the sea by the monks of Crowland Abbey some nine hundred years ago. This is a landscape of wide-open skies and colossal skies - ‘all sky and geometry’ the poet John Clare once said.Woodlands Farm practices an ‘open farm’ policy. School visits are encouraged and open days are held for customers and special interest groups. The farm has an active arts programme and hosts events and demonstration days for organisations such as the Soil Association and Garden Organic (HDRA). It’s intended to develop the farm further as a resource for the local community.
- To lead a team of up to 15 staff including office staff, packers and drivers, and to report to a Board who will meet on a weekly basis.
- To suggest, plan and implement marketing strategies aimed at increasing
- customer spend and numbers whilst remaining true to the principles of the
- box scheme and the farm.
- To drive sales and customer retention.
- To oversee and co-ordinate box sales via our website and social media, and
- make recommendations and implement improvements.
- To review operating systems and develop ways to reduce running costs and
- increase efficiency.
- To contribute to the weekly design of the veg boxes to ensure variety.
- To ensure that all targets are met and within budget.
- To research and develop new products to add to the organic range we offer.
- To attend shows and farmers markets including weekend working.
- The Box Scheme Manager Role is ideal for someone capable of creative and lateral thinking whose ideas and strong practical skills will help establish Woodlands Farm as THE Organic Scheme in Lincolnshire and the East Midlands.
- You will need to be a first-rate communicator capable of communicating any changes and new developments to our customers and staff.
- You will need to fully understand the ethics behind our vision.
- You will need a passion for great customer service in order to drive great results.
- You will need to be articulate with good writing skills and have an ability to liaise with media and prepare press releases.
- You will need experience of budget analysis and planning together with excellent IT and presentation skills.
- You will need a clean driving licence.
The salary and package will be negotiable depending on experience..
Please send a CV detailing your relevant qualifications, experience and knowledge base. Please let us know why you would like the job and tell us about your personal skills and qualities that you can offer Woodlands Farm. Shortlisted candidates will be called for a preliminary interview at Woodlands Farm. There will be a second interview at which we may ask applicants to give a presentation.
Please address applications to Andrew Dennis at Woodlands Organic Farm, Kirton House, Kirton, Boston, Lincolnshire PE20 1JD
Closing date for applications: 1st August 2013