About the Leckford Mushroom Farm
Leckford Estate has 16 growing rooms specifically created for mushroom crop production. We produce the finest quality Chestnut mushrooms from the Estate, including pre-packed products and loose products. Mushrooms are harvested at different times of maturity producing different product lines.
Our crop consists of five lines in total: Chestnut Cups, Portabellini, Portabella, South of England and 2kg loose Chestnut Cups. In order to achieve the finest mushrooms, each room maintains a 16-18-degree temperature.
We have been producing mushrooms on the Estate since 1986 and typically harvest 25-26 tonnes of Chestnut mushrooms per week on The Waitrose Farm; each is carefully hand picked and packaged for protection.
What might I be doing?
The Mushroom Farm works in a flexible way to allow variety for it’s workers and to be as efficient as possible. As a Mushroom Producer you could be working in any of the following areas or a mixture during your shifts. Each comes with it’s own tasks and responsibilities and these can be discussed more at interview.
You enable the Harvesters to complete their role. You will be putting platforms out ready for the Harvesters ensuring boxes and punnets are in place and bins are readily available. Throughout the day they take out full boxes and punnets and return with empties for the Harvesters to fill.
Liaising with the team on what mushrooms are to be packed, you will collect the mushrooms from the fridge and load them on to the production line whilst completing a quality check. If trained, you drive the forklift to load and unload lorries, ready for dispatching. This role would involve moving full pallets of mushrooms both packed and unpacked.
You are issued with a rack, trolley, scales and knife then make your way to the designated growing room and pick the harvest for that day. At the end of your working day you have to ensure all your equipment is washed and put away.
What will you be doing?
Hand-harvesting mushrooms following instructions from the Team Leader, ensuring optimal picking rates, punnet and tray weights, mushroom quality and presentation. With a potential earning of an additional £200 plus per month with the picking incentive scheme (more information under additional information)
You will be an important part of a wider team responsible for supplying high quality mushrooms to our supermarkets through the below activities:
• Correct selection of mushrooms from the growing bed
• Correct handling of mushrooms
• Correct trimming of the stalk
• Quality grading
• Product presentation
• Correct punnet/tray weights
• Picking rate
• Keeping picking area free of debris
• Cleaning and stripping the beds
Leckford is a 4,000-acre estate near Stockbridge, Hampshire. The estate was purchased in 1929 by John Spedan Lewis, founder of the John Lewis Partnership, and we have been farming it now for nearly 90 years.
We are the Waitrose Farm and our produce is supplied to Waitrose stores across the country. The estate is diverse and our commercial businesses span property, food production, farming, retail and leisure activities.
We care passionately about British farming and the environment and we practice 'The Waitrose Way' of healthy living, fair treatment, treading lightly on the environment and championing British produce.
Take a look at our interactive video to learn more about the Leckford Estate.
Click here for the video
What you’ll have
- Evidence of basic English literacy skills.
- Working as part of a small team.
- Experience of manual work (lifting).
- Working in a farm or food processing environment.
What else can you bring
- Basic food hygiene certificate
- Working unsupervised
- Safe Operation of Forklifts
Right to Work
At an interview, you will need to provide Right to Work documentation showing you have the right to work in the UK, for a full list please, visit: https://www.gov.uk/prove-right-to-work
For candidates who are not a citizen from the United Kingdom, you will need to provide your Share Code obtained from the Home Office before your interview along with your original proof of DOB, such as a passport, a birth certificate or a Driver's License.
Please note that we do not offer sponsorship for this position
We have contractual hours from 16 hours up to 39 hours per week, with start times preferably from 7 am.
We have a number of different ways to work flexibly so at your interview feel free to talk about what flexibility means to you. There are no guarantees, however, it may open the door to not only a new role but a new way of working.
As a Partner, you will enjoy our unique benefits package, including staff discount, subsidised food in Partner dining rooms, discounts in local restaurants, subsidised learning, access to exclusive Partnership hotels and so much more.
The pay range for this role is £18,850 - £22,400 per annum (full time).
In addition to this, there is a discretionary harvesting bonus scheme.
The payable bonus is currently £0.30 per kg of mushrooms harvested over 25kg per hour. This is capped at the maximum rate of 34kg per hour.
The picking bonus is calculated by dividing the amount of mushrooms picked by the hours worked.
Harvesting bonus payment is not a part of contractual pay.
Please consider the following when making your application:
- We occasionally close vacancies early in the event we receive a high volume of applications. Therefore, we recommend you apply early.
- Print off the job description now if you require it.
- Ensure you have an up-to-date CV.
We positively celebrate Diversity & Inclusion in the John Lewis Partnership. Our aim is to become the UK’s most inclusive business - for our Partners and for our customers, reflecting and connecting with the diverse communities that we serve. We want people from all walks of life to feel valued for their individuality, thrive in our business and share a sense of belonging. To find out more about D&I in the John Lewis Partnership visit this site - https://www.jlpjobs.com/about/diversityandinclusion/ We have a number of different ways to work flexibly so, at your interview, feel free to talk about what flexibility means to you. There are no guarantees, however, it may open the door to not only a new role but a new way of working.
Attachment: Mushroom Farm Harvester Job outline.docx
Latest Rural Estate Enterprises opportunities