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Vacancy: Senior Agronomist, Safisana Ghana 

Safisana Ghana, located in Adjei Kojo, Ashaiman, is seeking to hire a full-time Senior Agronomist to lead our research and innovation and also take charge of our agronomy business unit.

About us
Safisana is an international social enterprise that has developed a circular waste-to-resource business model for local waste treatment for governments, utilities and food processing industries. Our recycling plant turns organic waste and faecal sludge into high-value products: renewable energy (biogas and electricity) and organic fertiliser.  Safisana also has an agronomy department that is into vegetable production in three sections: Greenhouse, Hydroponics and Farm Field.

About the role
In this position, the Senior Agronomist is responsible to lead on agronomy product development and agronomy production. Reporting to the Senior Manager, the Senior Agronomist is responsible to undertake agronomic research on crop production, support composting processes and develop strategies and production plans that support sustainable and profitable agriculture to achieve Safisana’s agronomy objectives. The role manages a small team of agronomy assistants and conducts research trials across a range of Safisana’s research projects.

Overview
The focus for this position will specifically be on two components within the agronomy department:

 Agronomy product development
For the agronomy product development, the incumbent is expected to lead on innovative research projects such as testing Safisana’s organic fertiliser for food production. In this project, you will work closely with the Quality Control Officer on enhancing the organic fertiliser recipe to make it fully applicable for agronomy to achieve the highest results. Ultimately the Senior Agronomist will be the owner of the product and the recipe. Another research project Safisana wants to investigate is the utilisation of liquid digestate in agriculture. You will define the land spreading parameters of the liquid digestate, identify the best crops to conduct the project, and be responsible for the launch of an agronomic test pilot on a plot of land of xx acres and be responsible for all the logistics and organisation of this pilot. This work will be conducted with the support of a renowned compost expert that works closely with Safisana. Over time, the ideal candidate will also work with the team on product fortification such as biochar.

Crop production
For the crop production component, the incumbent is expected to look at how to improve Safisana’s agricultural production and processing capabilities, provide leadership with the cultivation of vegetables for the food industry and general public (in open fields, greenhouses and hydroponic systems), help define planting plans, select irrigation techniques and plan harvests. The incumbent is familiar with the concept of unit economics, and is able to calculate the volumes of organic fertiliser farmers should apply to achieve high yields. 
As Safisana is exploring to establish an integrated farm field model and investigating innovative methods on how to develop this further, we are looking for a Senior Agronomist who is able to lead on these production areas including the fortification of Safisana’s organic fertiliser.
In this position, you are expected to work with potential customers to identify needs and offer solutions via recommendations and placement of Safisana organic fertiliser, crops and (possibly) seedlings. You are expected to train the Sales team on the composition of the fertiliser , and on how to best apply it in the field.

 Responsibilities 

  • Create the protocol of an agronomic test pilot that will test liquid digestate in agriculture
  • Own the organic fertiliser recipe and enhance the formula to achieve the highest results 
  • Lead the logistical and organisational aspects of tests
  • Be responsible for the day to day management of crop production and harvesting in the land dedicated to this test, including the planning, logging and reporting.
  • Supervise, coach and monitor the implementation of demonstration plots and nurseries 
  • Be proactive and identify improvement opportunities
  • Report the results of the tests in a scientific manner
  • Create strategies in strengthening crop production and crop management
  • Be responsible for the day to day management of crop production and harvesting in the greenhouse, farm field and hydroponics including the planning, logging and reporting
  • Own the economics of production areas including budgeting, unit economics and forecasting of sales 
  • Be proactive and identify market needs and clients for crop production and sales
  • Initiate newer techniques in soil and organic fertiliser management processes
  • Attend and represent the Safisana product in relevant agri-fairs and agri-related programmes.
  • Provide leadership and mentorship to a team of 3 agronomy assistants

Qualifications

  • BSc in Agronomy, Agriculture, Soil Science or related field
  • Minimum of 5 years of agronomy work experience
  • In-depth knowledge of soil and crop principles (main crops technical itinerary from soil preparation, current fertilisation, sowing to harvest) 
  • Proven experience with experiments to compare different treatments (fertilisation bring, pesticides use, different species of the same crop) applied for testing a new product with a rational experimentation plan 
  • Demonstrable experience in conducting research projects including writing research reports
  • Proven experience with working with experienced farmers and/or public agricultural department 
  • Knowledge of / ability to use laboratory testing equipment (for chemical, physical and biological tests) 
  • Project management and planning skills 
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office Suite
  • Willing to travel; has a valid driver’s licence

Skills / Abilities

  • Ability to make excellent decisions and overcome challenges creatively
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Self-motivated and organised
  • Problem-solving and decision-making aptitude
  • Ability to write technical or scientific reports 
  • Ability to function well in a high-paced and at times stressful environment.
  • Able to work additional hours to meet business demands
  • Ability to work independently and proceed with objectives without close supervision
  • Knowledge of agri-food chain processes with sales experience

To apply
Apply before 17th of May 2022 by completing the webform here.

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Contact us

Safisana Holding,
Weesp, The Netherlands
+31 (0) 294 773857 
info@safisana.org

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