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Sustainable Agriculture Officer

Purpose: To engage with Agri-businesses in Norfolk and the Cam & Ely Ouse catchments, supporting them in the ambition of producing fresh food with sustainable water management.

Responsible to: Farming and Land Management Team Leader.

Location: Office at Bayfield near Holt. Visits across Norfolk, Cam and Ely Ouse (CamEO) and potentially further afield.

Job term: Full-time, 37.5 hours per week.

Annual Leave Entitlement: 25 days plus 8 days bank holidays pro rata.

Salary details: Grade 2: £25,787 – £32,742 (9% employer Pension Contribution).

Norfolk Rivers Trust is seeking a highly motivated individual to join their Farm and Land Management Team as a Sustainable Agriculture Officer, this exciting new role will help agri-business in Norfolk and the Cam & Ely Ouse catchments meet the target of producing fresh food with sustainable water management.

The East of England is one of the largest producers of root vegetables, fresh produce, poultry and pork yet receives the lowest annual rainfall in the UK. The impact of increasingly unpredictable weather patterns, with wetter winters and drier summers, are causing significant challenges for sustainable food production. Heavy rainfall over short periods of time during winter often leads to high soil loss, water pollution and reduced aquifer recharge. Reduced storage of water in the aquifers together with drier, warmer summers can lead to greater water scarcity, a real concern for the UK food and drink sector.

Through the Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) and The Courtauld Commitment 2030 to reduce water stress, collective action is required to collaborate with other initiatives that are on-going in Norfolk to act as a catalyst for system changes in key supply chains. This role requires an individual with the ability to engage with growers, processors and retailers, facilitating knowledge exchange and promoting a shift to more regenerative farming practices.

Job Description

Principal Responsibilities

  • Engage and collaborate with key supply chains to improve water use efficiency and sustainable production.
  • Identify and develop bespoke solutions to tackle water risks to agri-food businesses.
  • Provide targeted farm advice across key sectors to deliver practical on-farm measures that protect soils, improve water retention and infiltration.
  • Communicate wider biodiversity and improve the resilience to the water environment by implementing Nature-based solutions.
  • Lead the water stewardship board with external stakeholders to develop policy, showcase private sector engagement and improve wider water security.
  • Development of tools to improve understanding of water risks and solutions – amongst growers, producer orgs and retailers.
  • Leverage in additional funding from WRAP signatories and other businesses or funds.

Person Specification

Education 

  • Minimum HND/BSc in Ecology, Environmental Sciences, Geography or other Land Management related subject.

Experience and knowledge

Essential

  • Clear commitment to the vision and values of Norfolk Rivers Trust.
  • Experience of working with agri-businesses and or food/drink producers.
  • Knowledge of agricultural production methods and industry drivers.
  • Knowledge of key regional food and drink supply chains.
  • Understanding of sustainable water resources management and local pressures.
  • Exceptional listening and communication skills, with a proven ability to influence multiple stakeholders.
  • Ability to build and maintain relationships with partners and stakeholders.
  • Good organisational and reporting skills.
  • Experience of working in a multi-disciplinary organisation.
  • Awareness of the need for confidentiality and sensitivity
  • Full UK driving licence with own car covered by business insurance is essential.

Desirable

  • Experience of food or agricultural accreditation and stewardship schemes.
  • Experience of using GIS.
  • Good IT skills and ability to maintain an electronic filing system.
  • Good project management skills.

Applications 

To apply, please send your completed Job Application form, Equal Opportunities Monitoring Information form and a covering letter/email to [email protected] by 9am on Monday 18th March 2024. 

We are not accepting CV’s as applications for this role.

If you have any questions regarding this role, please contact: Sam Hurst 07944443652 

Website: www.norfolkriverstrust.org 

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