Produce Manager

Produce Manager
Position Description and Objectives

Introduction

BAAG’s key objective is to stimulate, encourage and demonstrate to people methods of gardening in a sustainable way so that we can reduce our impact on the environment.

One of the ways in which we can accomplish this is through produce gardening. Produce Gardening provides a great opportunity to garden in a sustainable way that we can all relate to easily, good or bad food and the lifestyle associated with it.

Growing your own food is one of the best things you can do for the environment, when you consider food miles, embodied water (it takes much less water to grow your own than it took to grow your supermarket food) and that to grow your own reduces the need to clear natural areas for farming so when you look at the big picture, you’re helping preserve our natural areas.

General Guidelines

You are the overall manager of the produce area. Ideally you should have a sound knowledge of produce gardening or at least be enthusiastic to get a sound knowledge.

Your responsibilities can easily overlap with seedling buyer, seed buyer, general greenstock buyer, garden maintenance co-ordinator, chook keeper and operations manager, so it’s important to keep the lines of communication open.

The Produce area of the nursery needs to be a section set up that loudly shouts how it fits into the big picture of a whole garden and a way of life and the sustainability of the local area.

As the produce manager, your job is to promote produce gardening in the nursery. Take gardeners from inspiration to execution to ongoing involvement. Develop produce gardening journeys for gardeners focussing on opportunities that make people feel, once they have taken the first step, that they want to get a lifelong learning habit. Promote it as a rewarding and fruitful activity. Include the benefit to your health body mind and soul. Be a bit radical and push the boundaries.

We do not want our customers to focus on growing a component or specific product we have for sale until we are well down the track on the sustainable produce gardening concept. Customers want the idea first, then if the products are available they will easily be sold. eg rather than focus on the best tomatoes, we want people to grow tomatoes because they are part of an integrated sustainable lifestyle and healthy and tasty diet.
44% of people in Vancouver are produce gardeners. Try to achieve the same or more in Manningham and Banyule within 13 years. (Was 15 years in 2007, we are counting down!)

Create a strong visual experience for customers both through information as well as actual living examples.

Encourage every BAAG customer to experience the pleasure of eating some food they have grown themselves, or get them involved initially by having them eat some that WE have grown at BAAG.

Focus on the local area and provide great solutions for local gardeners.

Make BAAG a key local ‘destination’ for produce / kitchen gardens, advice and information.

Promote food plants as an effective alternative to general ornamental shrubs/trees. Eg, Shade trees that are productive!

This can be achieved in a number of ways:

Through images around BAAG that demonstrate to people happy, healthy lifestyles that begin in their backyards. They will portray easy solutions and ways for gardeners to take the first step. We can then stimulate them to continue on a lifelong journey.

Information presented as posters, signs, on the web, from staff, shelf talkers, classes, books, DVD’s, fact sheets.

Services such as consultancies, mentoring or specialised garden packages (installation of vegie gardens or mini orchards)

Activities that get customers involved such as the Kids Corner, cooking demonstrations, planting demonstrations, competitions, seed planting demonstrations and workshops.

Responsibilities

It is your job to ensure that the produce section is
Well Defined
Neat and Tidy
Well Stocked according to seasons, this includes restocking.
Inspirational, colourful and interesting
Priced Properly
Adequately staffed within budget
Margin managed
Continually evolving

Areas of the Produce Section

Herbs and Veg
Produce Landscaping Section – evergreen trees, deciduous trees, nuts, dwarf fruit trees, citrus, shrubs, climbers, groundcovers, grasses. These areas will fluctuate with seasonal stock levels.
Organic Seedlings
Chooks
Kids Section
Produce Seeds/Crowns/Runners
Produce Gardens (subject to theme changes) – vegie planter boxes, herb planter box, vegie parterre, food forest, front produce garden, drought tolerant produce garden
Bush foods
Monitor the information board for produce related events and articles, and always keep interesting info on it.

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