SEASONAL ORCHARD JOBS

Seasonal orchard jobs at Suncrest Orchard range from harvesting to bird control. Information about each of the roles is provided below. If you have any further questions, please email us at [email protected]

To apply for any of the orchard jobs click on the APPLY HERE button and fill in the application form. We will endeavour to contact all applicants via email within 3 working days.

Roles

Cherry fruit picking jobs in Cromwell Central Otago with Suncrest Jones Family Orchard

Harvesting – Cherry Export Season

Our cherry export season begins in early December and goes through until late January/early February.

The Role:

  • Pickers use a 2.7m ladder and a harness that holds a 5kg bucket during harvesting.
  • No experience is required as we will train you in the best way to pick cherries to prevent damage to the fruit and efficient picking techniques.

Payment & Hours:

  • Payment is performance-based – pickers are paid per bucket. Bucket rate varies depending upon the difficulty of picking. Rates can vary with variety, whether colour picking or singulation is required, growing structure and rain damage. Motivated pickers can earn well in excess of the minimum wage.
  • We pay an End of Season Bonus to eligible cherry pickers who work until the end of the cherry export season.
  • Work generally starts at 6 am and daily hours are generally 7-9 hours although work can be interrupted by wet weather.
  • We guarantee a minimum of 40 hours of work per week.

Key Requirements:

You need a good level of fitness, self-motivation and a good attitude. You must be able to climb up a 2.7m ladder and carry it between blocks. You also need to be comfortable working outdoors in both cool and hot conditions.

Seasonal Orchard Assistants

Our team of assistants help the Suncrest Orchard team to manage the harvesting and transportation of fruit to the packhouse.

The earliest positions start in early/mid-November with the final team members joining in late December/early January. Work goes through until the completion of the cherry export season which is generally late January/early February.

The Role:

Duties can include setting up blocks before a harvest crew enters, assigning trees, scanning buckets, field quality checks, checking trees, loading trailers, clearing blocks after harvest crews have been through, assisting with irrigation and transporting fruit to and from the packhouse.

Payment & Hours:

  • Payment is by hourly rate and if you work until the end of the cherry export harvest season, you are eligible for an End of Season Bonus.
  • Work generally starts at 6 am and daily hours are generally 7 – 9.5 hours although wet weather can interrupt work.
  • We guarantee a minimum of 40 hours of work per week.

Key Requirements: 

You need a good level of fitness, good communication skills, attention to detail and the ability to work as part of a team. Experience with quad bikes/4WD motorbikes is an advantage, as is experience with backing trailers and staff supervision.

Bird Control

The first team members will join us in early/mid-November with the final team members joining in early December.

The Role

Our bird control team are tasked with limiting crop damage from birds. We use a variety of methods including drones, gas guns, trapping and driving around making noise!

Payment & Hours:

  • The bird control team operate on a roster with 6 days on and one day off.
  • Once the full roster is operating from early December, there are 2 shifts, and you alternate between shifts on a weekly basis.
  • Payment is by hourly rate and if you work until the end of the cherry export harvest season, you will be paid an End of Season Bonus.
  • We guarantee a minimum of 42 hours of work per week.

Key Requirements:

The ability to work as part of a team is a key requirement. Experience with quad bikes/4WD motorbikes is preferable as is having a current NZ Firearms Licence.

Thinning

These roles begin in early/mid-October and go through until late November/early December.

The Role:

  • Involves the removal of small fruitlets from the trees to enable the remaining fruit to grow to the desired size. This job is done by hand and/or scissors.
  • No experience is required as full training is provided.

Payment & Hours:

  • Work is generally Monday-Friday unless interrupted by wet weather.
  • Payment is by hourly rate. If you work until the end of the thinning season, you are eligible for an End of Season Bonus.
  • We guarantee a minimum of 32 hours of work per week.

Key Requirements: 

You need to have good physical fitness and a good attitude – you need to be fit, able to carry and climb up a 2.7m ladder and capable of working outdoors i.e. in both cool and hot conditions.

Harvesting Summerfruit & Pipfruit

We pick our apricots, nectarines, peaches, plums, peacherines,
apples and pears from February through until April.

The Role:

  • Pickers use a 2.7m ladder and a 10kg picking bag during
    harvesting. Duties can also include summer pruning, packing and
    other general orchard duties.
  • No experience is required as we will provide full training.

Payment & Hours:

  • Payment is a mixture of performance-based and hourly rate.
  • Work generally starts at 7:00am-8:00am and daily hours are generally
    7-9 hours although wet weather can interrupt work.
  • We generally work Monday-Friday.
  • We guarantee a minimum of 32 hours of work per week.

Key requirements: 

You need a good fitness level, self-motivation and a good attitude. You must be able to carry a 2.7m ladder between blocks and climb up it. You also need to be comfortable working outdoors in both cool and hot conditions.

Pruning

Pruning generally starts in April and goes through until late August.

The Role:

  • Our trees that are grown on post and wire structures are pruned on foot using handsaws and loppers whilst for the larger trees we use hydra ladders, handsaws and pneumatic pruners. Duties also include raking prunings and general orchard duties.
  • No experience is required as we will provide full training.

Payment & Hours:

  • Payment is by hourly rate and if you work until the end of the pruning season, you are eligible for an End of Season Bonus.
  • We generally work Monday-Friday unless interrupted by wet weather.
  • Work generally starts at 7:30 – 8:00am and daily hours are generally 8-9 hours although wet weather can interrupt work.
  • We guarantee a minimum of 32 hours of work per week.

Key Requirements:

You need a good fitness level, self-motivation and being capable of working outdoors in cool conditions.