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Farmworkers and Laborers, Crop

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Job Details
Job Order Number
2809831
Company Name
B & W Quality Growers Inc.
Physical Address
376 Old Mountain Fork Road
New Market, AL 35761
Job Description

Loose Watercress Harvest
Watercress is grown in a bed which is a growing area surrounded by low banks and with water about inches deep flowing through it.
Worker will be issued a set of waterproof rubber boots, Kevlar mesh gloves, a plastic apron and a harvesting knife.
Worker is responsible for keeping their knife sharp.
Prior to entering the bed, the worker must wash and sanitize their hands for food safety reasons.
Worker enters the bed with their knife, either a cardboard carton or a plastic harvest tote and a shallow plastic tray to keep water out of the harvest carton or tote and moves to an area of uncut watercress.
The cut watercress is then placed in the harvest carton or tote and the worker begins to cut the next handful of watercress.
Worker bends down and gathers a hand-full of watercress with one hand and cuts through the stems with the knife in their other hand.
Individual stems must be between 2.0 and 4.0 inches in length unless specified differently for a special order.
The cut watercress is then placed in the harvest carton or tote and the worker begins to cut the next handful of watercress.
The cutter must pull any weeds and cut any watercress that was not harvested to leave uniform stubble in the bed after harvest.
When the cutter has 30 pounds of cress, which will fill the carton or tote, they will bring the carton or tote to scale for weighing.
The worker deposits their wooden stick, (paint stirrer) pre-numbered with their cutter number to identify it as having been cut by them, in a receptacle used for keeping track of the number of totes cut by each cutter.
If the product is being loaded into a cardboard carton, then the worker must close the flaps of the carton.
If the weight of the carton is less than 30 pounds, the cutter may be asked to return to the bed and complete the weight.
The completed tote or carton is then loaded onto the harvest truck.
The cutter will place an electronic probe against their employee badge at the counting station to confirm the number of cartons or totes cut by them.
The cutter will then take another empty carton or tote and return to cut another tote.
As harvest of an area is completed, the cutters in the cutting crew are responsible for cleaning out any remaining watercress or weeds from the edges of the bed that might interfere with the free flow of water.
At all times, the worker is responsible for following directions from the cutting supervisor to ensure uniform, high-quality product.

Bunch Watercress Harvest
Watercress is grown in a bed which is a growing area surrounded by low banks and with water about inches deep flowing through it.
Worker will be issued a set of waterproof rubber boots, kevlar mesh gloves, a plastic apron, wire rubber band holders and a harvesting knife.
Worker is responsible for keeping their knife sharp and for preparing as many sets of exactly 100 rubber bands as they will need to complete their days work.
Rubber bands are prepared by counting out exactly 100 bands and placing two sets on each wire holder, which will be slipped to the workers belt.
Prior to entering the bed, the worker must wash and sanitize their hands for food safety reasons.
Worker enters the bed with their knife, a harvest tote and a shallow plastic tray to keep water out of the harvest tote and moves to an area of uncut watercress.
The worker must avoid harvesting poor quality product, such as areas of yellowing leaves, diseased plants, weeds, insects or snails.
Worker bends down and gathers a bunch of watercress with one hand and cuts through the stems with the knife in their other hand.
Bunches must be uniform in size, and the bundled stems must measure 2 to 2.5 inches in diameter.
Worker then places one rubber band from the holder over the bunch from the top and secures it around the stems of the bunch just below the leaves.
• Worker then checks to be sure that the bunch is even and trims the bottoms of the stems with a single sharp cut to leave a uniform bunch with a straight 90° cut across the bottom and a bunch length of between 6.0 and 7.0 inches in length.
• The finished bunch is placed in the harvest tote and the worker begins to cut the next bunch.
• The cutter must pull any weeds and cut any watercress that was not harvested to leave uniform stubble in the bed after harvest.
• When the cutter has completed 100 bunches, which they will count as they cut and confirms by using exactly the 100 rubber bands placed on the holder, they will bring the tote to the harvest truck on the bank of the bed.
• The worker places a wooden stick (“point stirrer”) pre-numbered with their cutter number in the tote to identify it as having been cut by them.
• The cutter places the tote in the back of the truck and covers the tote with a piece of wet burlap to avoid dehydration.
• The cutter will place an electronic probe against their employee badge at the counting station to confirm the number of totes cut by them.
• The cutter will then take another empty tote and another full rubber band holder and return to cut another tote.
• As harvest of an area is completed, the cutters in the cutting crew are responsible for cleaning out any remaining watercress or weeds from the edges of the bed that might interfere with the free flow of water.
• At all times, the worker is responsible for following directions from the cutting supervisor to ensure uniform, high-quality product.
Bulk Watercress for Soup
• Watercress is grown in a “bed” which is a growing area surrounded by low banks and with water about ¾ inches deep flowing through it.
• Worker will be issued a set of waterproof rubber boots, Kevlar mesh gloves, a plastic apron and a harvesting knife.
• Worker is responsible for keeping their knife sharp.
• Prior to entering the bed, the worker must wash and sanitize their hands for food safety reasons.
• Worker enters the bed with their knife, either a cardboard carton or a plastic harvest tote and a shallow plastic tray to keep water out of the harvest carton or tote and moves to an area of uncut watercress.
• The worker must avoid harvesting poor quality product, such as areas of yellowing leaves, diseased plants, weeds, insects or snails.
• Worker bends down and gathers a hand-full of watercress with one hand and cuts through the stems with the knife in their other hand.
• Individual stems can be up to 8 or 9 inches in length
• The cut watercress is then placed in the harvest carton or tote and the worker begins to cut the next handful of watercress.
• The cutter must pull any weeds and cut any watercress that was not harvested to leave uniform stubble in the bed after harvest.
• When the cutter has 25 pounds of cress, which will fill the carton or tote, they will bring the carton or tote to scale for weighing.
• The worker deposits their wooden stick, (“point stirrer”) pre-numbered with their cutter number to identify it as having been cut by them, in a receptacle used for keeping track of the number of totes cut by each cutter.
• If the product is being loaded into a cardboard carton, then the worker must close the flaps of the carton.
• If the weight of the carton is less than 25 pounds, the cutter may be asked to return to the bed and complete the weight.
• The completed tote or carton is then loaded onto the harvest truck.
• The cutter will place an electronic probe against their employee badge at the counting station to confirm the number of cartons totes cut by them.
• The cutter will then take another empty carton or tote and return to cut another tote.
• As harvest of an area is completed, the cutters in the cutting crew are responsible for cleaning out any remaining watercress or weeds from the edges of the bed that might interfere with the free flow of water.
• At all times, the worker is responsible for following directions from the cutting supervisor to ensure uniform, high-quality product. Land Cress, Kale, and Arugula Harvest (Landcrops)
• Landcrops grown in rows on dry land and machine harvested.
• Workers will be issued a set of waterproof rubber boots, hairnets, Kevlar mesh gloves and a plastic apron.
• Prior to entering the bed, the worker must wash and sanitize their hands for food safety reasons.
• A truck stacked with totes (plastic slotted totes) and a harvesting machine are used for harvesting and the collection of the Arugula and Spinach.
• The worker designated to operate the harvesting machine is the Operator. The Operator drives the harvesting machine up and down the rows.
• The worker designated as the walker, walks in front of the harvesting machine with a stick looking for foreign objects.
• The worker designated as the stackers collect the totes from truck, they collect harvested product from harvesting machine into the totes.
• Once totes are full and weighing approximately 15 lbs., stacker place full totes back on truck.
• Once truck is full with 125 totes, truck is sent to packing house to be unloaded and reloaded with empty totes by packing house personnel.
• At all times, the worker is responsible for following directions from the supervisor to ensure uniform, high quality product.
Packing House Labor – Watercress/Arugula Line
• Watercress and Arugula products are transported to the packinghouse on trucks. The product is unloaded, packed, and stored in the cooler by the packinghouse employees. Prior to work, all Packing House employees must wash and sanitize their hands for food safety reasons. Proper protective gear must be put on, hair net, beard net, gloves, sleeves and white smocks. All according to company GMPs.
Dumping Tubs
• Before the trucks arrive the dumper has to place the totes to collect the line debris and place them close to the packers for bad bunches discharged by the packers.
• Fill in the washing and chilling tanks with water.
• Once the truck arrives into the packing house, the Dumper has to check the produce quality and report to the manager if there is a problem.
• After the line has started to run, the dumper removes the stick from the tote and slowly dumps the product into the washing tank.
• Place the sticks on the counting box.
• Loads the empty totes in pairs on the upper compartments of the truck.
• Drives the truck out of the packing house to open space for the next truck.
• Keeps the area clean and debris free.
• At the end of the operation, helps to clean the packing house according to the established procedures.
• Follows all supervisors’ instructions
Packing Bunches
• The packers start their day separating waxed cartons and placing them in front of the packing stations.
• The person running the line Switch (on/off) makes sure that all packers have enough product in front of them.
• When the line stops, one packer should place more empty boxes on the line, others place more inserts and the other person swipes the floor.
• Switch Packer leads the group to move from station to station.
• Packer packs 24’s in 8 rows of 3 bunches and pack 12’s in 3 rows of 4 bunches according to procedures.
• Once full, the Packer rakes the stems clean of leaves.
• Carefully place the box on the conveyor.
• Helps setting up boxes on the conveyor.
• Sweeps the floor as needed.
• Discharge bad bunches on the bad bunches tub.
• Picks up and dispose any boxes packaging straps.
• Follows all supervisors’ instructions.
Packing Sleeves
• Packers sleeve bunches one by one then they pack these into carton boxes.
• These are packed 12 bunches per box.
• Packer discard bunches with low quality
• Keeps the area clean and free of debris
• Follow all supervisors’ instructions
Icing the Boxes
• Before starting to pack the Employee has to pull out ice closer to the conveyors.
• Employee puts an equal and uniform amount of ice on each box up to the upper edge of the box.
• Keeps ice close to the conveyors during the slow times.
• Ices two dozens at a time.
• Makes sure that boxes do not fall from the conveyor and that the line is running.
• Helps the employees stacking if the line is down.
• At the end of the operation, helps to clean the packing house according to the established procedures.
• Follows all supervisors’ instructions
Stacking the boxes
Before the line starts, check that the glue machine is running properly.
• Check that all boxes are well closed.
• Check the weight of the box to control the level of ice.
• Stack properly using good pallets.
• Stack up bad pallets to be took out on the forklift later to the parking lot.
• Do not stack defective boxes.
• At the end of the operation, turn off the machine, cover it with a plastic bag and help on the cleaning of the packing house.
• Follow all supervisors’ instructions.
Storing the pallets
• Using the forklift, moves the pallets to the stretch wrap machine.
• Once it is wrapped, Employee takes the pallet into the cooler.
• Help stacking when the line is slow.
• Follow all supervisors’ instructions.
Packing House Labor-Watercress/Arugula Line
• Watercress and Arugula products are transported to the packing house on trucks. The product is unloaded, packed, and stored in the cooler by the packing house employees. Prior to work, all Packing House employees must wash and sanitize their hands for food safety reasons. Proper protective gear must be put on, hair net, beard net, gloves, sleeves and white smocks. All according to company GMPs.
Dumpers
• Once dumper has product, dumper has to check produce quality and report to the manager if there is any problems.
• Dumper removes totes from pallets, placed on dumping platform, dumps according to timed dumping speed measured by dumping light.
• The dumper dumps the product down the shaker which will feed into the sorter.
• The dumper must maintain sufficient product flow to keep production flowing.
Graders
• Once product has passed through sorter, graders inspect product on conveyor belt.
• Grader removes foreign material or product that does not meet B & W standards.
• Grader inspects the product prior to entering wash tanks and cooling tunnel.
Scale Operators
• Once product exits cooling tunnel and escalator, product falls onto scale.
• Operators disperse product into buckets, buckets should weight approx.. 700 grams each.
• Product is then bagged and passes through metal detector.
Packers
• If metal detector signals, packer must return bag through detector. If detector continues to signal, packer must notify supervisor.
• Packers are responsible for assembling their cases.
• Packers must inspect and place finished bagged product into cases. The basic function is to remove
questionable, improperly sealed, or improperly coded bags from the inspection table, packing only
product that meets standards.
• Packers makes certain that each box is properly closed and place on conveyor belt.
Stackers
• Stackers then stack each box in the applicable manner on the pallet that will then be shrink
wrapped and loaded into the cooler.
• Stacker must stack 130 cases on each pallet.
• Stacker is responsible for tagging pallets and timing start and finish time of each pallet.
• Stacker wraps pallets with shrink wrap and loads into cooler.
General Packing House Labor
• Workers are responsible for following the recommendations of supervisors in performing these
tasks.
• Workers may be asked to operate pallet jackets to move product.
• Workers will be responsible to maintain their work area clean and free of debris.
• Workers may need to sweep floors and clean work areas as needed.
• Dispose of boxes or packaging straps.
• At the end of operation, workers help clean the packing house according to the established
procedures.
General Farm Labor
• Hourly work may include different tasks of general farm labor such as: leveling beds, pulling weeds, cleaning ditches, planting, managing algae control in field and lab area, managing harvest totes during machine harvesting of watercress, arugulas, pea tendrils and other crops, scouting for insects, tractor spraying, repairing pvc irrigation lines, solid fertilization, regulating water, assuming harvest boxes, machine harvesting and washing harvest totes, tractor bedding, burning, mowing, scratching, loading/unloading plants, driving trucks with harvested produce or totes from the field to the pack house.
• Instructions in proper procedures for each of these jobs will be provided in training.
• Workers are responsible for following the recommendations of supervisors in performing these tasks.
Equipment and tools
The following items will be provided to the employee as necessary to do work assigned. There will be no charge for items given to the employee the first time. Any worn out or damaged items must be returned to the farm manager and they will be replaced at no charge to the employee (all replacements are limited).
• Smocks
• Badge
• Knee boots
• Hip boots
• Rubber gloves
• Sleeves
• Hair/beard nets
Any items lost or abused will be charged to the employee at the actual purchase cost to the company.
Any items charged to the employee will be deducted from employee’s paycheck.
Job Location
The workers will work at a field that owned and controlled by B & W Quality Growers, LLC. It is estimated that 10% of the time will be spent packing, 10% growing and 80% harvesting the products.


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