Manager, Propagation Research
We are on a mission to grow plenty of fresh food for everyone, everywhere. We are building the world’s largest, most technologically advanced, indoor vertical farms. Using a fraction of the land and water outdoor farms need, our farms are designed to secure our food future.
Our people and teams are how we make our mission possible. We are passionate about our contributions to Plenty, the communities around us and our planet, but never take ourselves too seriously. We’re down to earth, we grow together, and we always find a way. Join us as we rewrite the rules of agriculture, and we’ll bet our berries you’ll be rewarded with innovative and collaborative teammates, a supportive environment, diverse career opportunities and meaningful work.
The Propagation Research Manager will be responsible for leading a team of researchers and the Plant Science propagation program to determine the plant supply practices for the development of controlled environment production systems. This role will work cross-functionally with creative and motivated teams to drive research objectives for plant propagation of both seed and vegetatively propagated crops. Responsibilities include leading a research team to identify levers to increase growth, yield and quality of plant material; research program development, management, and reporting; contribute to nursery designs; and develop propagation processes for commercial translation. It will be critical to stay current with the advancements in plant production practices that will aid Plenty in accomplishing our mission to bring delicious and nutritious food to people around the world.
What You’ll Do
- Lead a research program to integrate factors and components of growth, yield, and quality to optimize the environment, system, and process for commercial scale production of seed and vegetatively propagated plants.
- Develop and lead a high impact research team to enable current and future plant propagation objectives with an emphasis on advanced propagation techniques.
- Advance research projects through planning, resourcing, management, and execution phases for development of controlled environment propagation systems and best practices in alignment with the Crop Research strategy and company OKRs.
- Collaborate with engineering, physiology, metabolomics, genetics, and production research to drive cross-functional projects for research and commercial nursery development.
- Progress crop specific propagation research plans through the Plant Science development process.
- Interpret and report on trial results to inform farm design and product development process working with Engineering, Product Management, Commercial and Plant Science.
- Establish collaborative relationships with private and public researchers in the field and participate in conferences, symposia, and workshops.
- Supervise technical staff to assist in research efforts as needed.
- Occasional travel will be required.
- Other duties as assigned.
What We’re Looking For
- PhD or MS in Horticulture, Plant Physiology, or similar discipline with a minimum of 4 years of research experience in plant propagation, controlled environment agriculture, plant manipulation or similar field.
- A minimum of 5 years of work experience managing commercial or research nursery for fruit, vegetable, or ornamental crops.
- Able to coordinate across multiple disciplines, conceptualize complex research, implement innovation, and report to diverse stakeholders at a program level.
- Demonstrated ability for propagation at production scale, execution of horticulture trials, and completion of research projects.
- Experience with high quality transplant production and optimization of inputs such as starting material, growing media, fertilization, and irrigation methods.
- Proven ability to increase plant quality and yield with improved propagation or plant production methods.
- Demonstrated experience with protected or controlled environment agriculture production systems.
- Knowledge of nursery automation solutions and industry landscape.
- Experience with in vitro propagation and plant conditioning is a plus.
- Practical experience with environmental models for plant growth and development, experimental design, and multivariate analysis.
- Strong research, analytical, and communication skills.
- A hard-working, proactive, and self-motivated individual.
- Ability to work in a startup environment with rapidly developing goals and timelines.
What we can offer
- Compensation; we’ll pay you a competitive salary, give you a stake in the company via equity and contribute toward your 401K
- Health & well-being; we’ll invest in your physical and mental well-being with comprehensive medical, dental, & vision benefits, in-office gyms, and an Employee Assistance Program to help with mental health, financial & legal matters
- Food; in-office lunches, snacks and access to our leafy greens & new produce in development -- are you up for a side gig as a taste tester?
- Grow together; learning & development opportunities including unlimited access to our Upstart University platform, LinkedIn Learning, lunch & learns, training certifications, and more
- Equipment; we’ll provide you with the equipment you need to be successful, including $75/month toward your phone bill and $250 every 2 years to upgrade your phone
- Paid time off; we know you’ll do your best if you’re taking time to recharge, so we don’t cap the amount of days you can take off per year in addition to the paid holidays we observe
- Parental leave; 12 weeks off for all new parents - fully paid so you can focus your energy on your newest addition
Food & Safety Requirements
- Comply with all Plant, State and Federal OSHA, EPA, FDA, HACCP, and SQF regulations
- All applicants must be 18 years or older to apply