Business Development and Grower Relations

  • Los Banos, CA
  • Full-time

Company Description

The Morning Star Company, and its affiliates, operate three tomato processing facilities in Central California, processing 25% to 30% of the California crop, plus tomato transplanting, farming, harvesting and trucking  operations.  Employment is approximately 350 year-round and over 2,000 seasonal colleagues with annual sales exceeding $900 million.  The company is known worldwide for its innovation and integrity.

We are organizationally structured through a system we term Mission-Focused Self-Management (more at: self-managmentinstitute.org).  Our company is operated by colleagues without titles or an appointed hierarchy of authority.  Each Colleague is expected to be the manager of their mission.  Authority relative to other colleagues’ activities is lateral and based on their independent agreements.  Each colleague’s Mission is their guiding principle of action, and respect, influence and success having to be built based on each colleague’s competency, integrity, effort, persistence and straight-forward persuasiveness.  As we continue to grow, and while we communicate this position in commonly used terms, we intend to maintain a culture of individual responsibility and Mission-Focused Self-Management.

Job Description

The Mission

To establish and maintain mutually beneficial, professional relationships with agriculturalists for the purchasing and selling of farm products and services.

This position is ideal for someone with successful experience in sales, purchasing and building long-term, successful business relationships, especially in agriculture.

Our mission, with respect to the grower community, is to make Morning Star the “growing partner of choice” – able to work with any grower in the community on terms that enable both parties to meet their needs in a professional, business-like way. Pay depends heavily upon qualifications.

Responsibilities and Activities

  • Contracting with growers for the purchase of tomatoes required by Morning Star’s processing plants to meet the enterprise pack plan.
  • Selling agricultural services, including: the sale of transplants, transplanting, harvesting and other customer grower services.
  • Coordinating the transplanting, harvesting, and delivery schedule of tomatoes in a timely, efficient, and profitable manner.
  • To work with others to develop and execute the annual Tomato Pack Plan in coordination with trucking, harvesting, processing and marketing colleagues.
  • Work with others to negotiate and contract with growers, specifying pricing, tonnage, and other terms and conditions for the purchase of tomatoes and the sale of transplants and transplanting and harvesting services. Goal: develop a “win-win” strategy that makes Morning Star the tomato customer of choice within the grower community.
  • Perform ongoing grower performance analysis and apply that knowledge to business decisions.
  • Maintain up-to-date and accurate grower contract databases, as well as field attributes for contracted tomato fields, such as fertilizer and water and other chemical applications, plant spacing and density, etc.
  • Network and cultivate industry and grower contacts to help fulfill future acquisition requirements.
  • Help coordinate the planting, harvesting and transportation schedules for each factory.
  • Monitor the performance of transplants during the growing season as needed to satisfy relationships with transplant customers.
  • Forward to appropriate colleagues pertinent information in order to keep our processes flowing.

Qualifications

  • A track record of excellent results in a negotiating role with growers in the processed or fresh produce food industries. Professional purchasing/selling experience is an absolute requirement for this position.
  • Personable, relationship/trust building personality, while able to keep a professional attitude toward the relationship.
  • Know, or learn quickly, tomato varieties, growing technology, climate impacts and tomato processing issues as they relate to varieties and maturity.
  • Willing to work long hours and weekends during harvest and transplanting.
  • Excellent listening and communications skill, written and oral.
  • Understands, enjoys and is very good at the game of business.
  • Excellent analytical skill.
  • Substantial expertise with Excel, Word and other related applications.
  • Patient, but persistent in getting results.
  • Decisive.
  • Self-driven.

Additional Information

All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines.