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Orchard Programmes Regional Manager

Zespri is searching for:

Orchard Programmes Regional Manager

Function: ZGS Italy Reporting To: Orchard Productivity and Grower Services Manager Europe

Job Purpose

This position fits in the Zespri Orchard Productivity Global Extension team, whose core role is to work with growers and technicians to lead orchard productivity and fruit quality improvements. The team has a responsibility in ensuring that our business meets its objectives of improving grower profitability whilst allowing Zespri to keep its premium position on markets. Key to lifting growers' results is understanding the technical, regulatory and financial context of their production region, and integrating this into the design of extension programmes.

Reporting to the Orchard Productivity and Grower Services Manager Europe, and based in Bologna, this role leads and develops the Orchard Productivity Center team in Bologna. It designs and implements pluriannual extension programmes including trials in northern Italy. The incumbent is also responsible for development and strengthening of relationships, and networking with the growers, technicians and industry bodies. Working in conjunction with other Europe team members and with key industry stakeholders will be critical to the success of the wider Orchard Productivity programmes.

Key activity is to lift growers' results and to understand the technical and regulatory context especially in the northern Italy production region.


  • Lead and develop the northern Italy Orchard Productivity Team
  • Work closely with other team members to deliver the team objectives and projects throughout the season.
  • Develop and maintain excellent relationships with growers, technicians and supplier partners, as well as kiwifruit industry bodies in Italy, especially in northern Italy.
  • Design extension programmes (events, trials, coms) in northern Italy to support regional specific needs and reach the company objectives for productivity and quality
  • Organize and deliver field days and workshops in northern Italy in conjunction with other staff members and join fields days in other regions as appropriate to support.
  • Manage trial programme in northern Italy so that outcomes will be relevant for growers and data is collected, analysed and used in a timely fashion.
  • Be an interface for growers and technicians with other ZGS members
  • Manage the auditing activities for new growers and new sites in northern Italy regions
  • Keep abreast of global OPC challenges and provide regular information from Italy to the wider Zespri industry as requested through symposium, internal and external articles
  • Support and assist other European teams when extension expertise is required
  • Setting up and keeping good relationship with Grower Liaison Manager to follow up on growers visit and take part to field days and with other closed teams like Innovation and Technical.


  • Graduate qualification in a science or horticultural/agricultural field

Technical Capability

  • Written and verbal fluency in Italian and English at a conversational, business and technical level.
  • Experience in the technical/science arena preferably with graduate qualification in a science or horticultural field.
  • Project management skills
  • Good technical knowledge and skills in fruit production.
  • Computer literacy in applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint
  • Good ability to manage data
  • Strong relationship skills with ability to work collaboratively
  • Flexibility on work hours, particularly through the main season March-June and September-October.
  • Ability to travel nationally and internationally as required for training, extension or other purposes.

Candidates are welcomed to apply on the following website link: https://careers.zespri.com/job-invite/807/ 

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