Join the CloverCroft Team
In 2019 we will raise 2 acres of vegetables, 1/4 acre of fruit trees, 600 broiler chickens, 100 hens, and 2 beehives). Our farm is moderately mechanized: we use a tractor minimally and a walking tractor for minimal tillage, mowing, and hauling the heavy stuff. We weed, plant, and harvest by hand. We're a small farm, and we work together as a team. Everyone shares in the big jobs of weeding, planting, harvesting, and packing produce. Some team members also specialize in particular areas of the farm, such as tractor operation or caring for seedlings in the nursery.
We typically work 8 hours per day, Monday to Friday and divide weekend work fairly. A few employees are scheduled to start earlier or end later on certain days to help us prepare for, or finish up, the day's work. For most of the year, we follow a weekly schedule of harvests and deliveries. On Mondays and Thursdays the entire crew typically works all day harvesting and washing produce. That produce is then stored overnight in our coolers and taken to market the next day, or picked up by farm members on the same day. On Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays we have the chance to market and show off what we have grown, and develop relationships with the people we grow for. The rest of the work week is spent doing the work of growing our crops: sowing seeds, transplanting seedlings, weeding, training plants, and so on. Livestock care and care of the forest garden will be determined as interest and experience are presented.
Why work for us?
We're serious about what we do. We have fun while we work; we laugh, tell stories, create the best vegetable puns, chat with the kids, and look at the bugs and the birds. But we mainly work while we work. We delight in work: the work that feeds people, the work done by the hands we know, the work that keeps the land healthy and beautiful. We love the sight of a well-weeded row, a neatly trained cucumber vine, a crate of red peppers, or soil washing off of our hands after a good afternoon of work. If you like a job well done, you'll be happy and valued here.
We respect people. We deeply appreciate what others do on our farm. Many of our most joyful and vivid memories are of the work we did alongside employees. We are considerate and respectful of personal time and needs. We devote much of our time and thought to training our staff, answering their questions, and making sure they understand their work.
We're a farm that produces. While all farms are subject to the vagaries of unpredictable weather and mechanical breakdowns, we have put years of experience, thought, and planning into shaping methods that work. We organize our time and our tools. You'll work hard here, but your work won't be wasted. If you want to learn how to farm vegetables yourself, you'll see an example of a system that works.
We've listed here the qualities which distinguish successful from unsuccessful apprentice or worker: Distinguishing a productive and satisfied team who raise fantastic food for people in our community, from employees who are not cut out for this work. These are the standards by which we judge applicants. We're laying them out not to be harsh, but to be clear. You should read and understand these standards before you apply or interview here.
You must be able to do repetitive physical work outdoors in hot, cold, and rainy weather. Your knees and back must withstand bending, kneeling, stooping, and sitting on the ground for hours at a time.
You must work carefully and be detail-oriented. We are picky and fastidious. Our quality standards are exacting.
At the same time, you must be fast. Not sloppy, rushed, or careless, but quick and efficient. Time is money; and money pays you, pays us, and keeps the farm afloat.
You must communicate and cooperate with your co-workers. There are few things more frustrating than work which was left undone, was done poorly, or took too long because workers did not talk to each other or work together.
In the end, we are flexible and understanding. We recognize and appreciate human differences, and we've worked happily and long beside employees who've had some shortcomings in the areas above but who were trying their honest best. But without exceptions, you must have a good attitude. We have no tolerance for people who don't respect their work and their co-workers. If you're lazy or rude, then you won't work here.
You do not need experience. Many great farmers have come here with no experience growing vegetables. However, team members with experience are likely to start with higher pay and more responsibilities. You will finish the season feeling confident about growing good food.
Interns/Apprentices are offered the opportunity to live in one of the cabins at nearby Five Oaks Centre. Immersed in nature, next to the Grand River, a season living here is an exceptional opportunity.
The Power of Diversity
The applicant selection process reflects CloverCroft’s commitment to a healthy and diverse work place
At CloverCroft, we believe in the power of diversity. We proactively seek to have strong representation of women, people with disabilities, Indigenous peoples, and visible minorities in our organization. We are committed to establishing and maintaining a safe, inclusive, equitable, and welcoming learning and working environment for all of our employees regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, or cultural background.
In 2019, we will consider 2 internships, 1 full season farmer and 2 summer season farmers. Click on one of the links below to read a job description and instructions for applying.
Apprenticeships (2): Learn, work, and live the farming life. Connect exceptionally to food and how to grow, with directed learning and field trips to give a groundwork into starting a farm business. Renumeration is in the form of room and board, a monthly stipend, and education. Application deadline: March 15 (or later, if positions are not filled). We have 2 apprenticeships available for 2019.
Full season farmer (1). Work from March or April through November. Full season workers typically receive higher pay and have advanced responsibilities; and they often return to work here for several years. Application deadline: February 15 (or later, if positions are not filled). THIS POSITION IS FILLED FOR 2019.
Summer season farmer (2). Work from early May to late August. Ideal for secondary and post-secondary students. Application deadline: March 15 (or later, if positions are not filled). We have 2 summer season positions available for 2019.