ABOUT ONE ACRE FUND
Founded in 2006, One Acre Fund supplies 1 million smallholder farmers with the agricultural services they need to make their farms vastly more productive. Our 8,000+ team is drawn from diverse backgrounds and professions. With operations across six core countries in Africa, we make farmers more prosperous by providing quality farm supplies on credit, delivered within walking distance of farmers’ homes, and agricultural training to improve harvests. On average, our farmers harvest 50 percent more food after working with One Acre Fund.
To learn more about our work, take a look at our Why Work Here blog for more information.
ABOUT THE ROLE
We're looking for a passionate, dynamic, seed entrepreneur to lead our entry into the potato seed market in Rwanda. After two years of success in supporting the development of the hybrid maize seed market – now serving over 30% of national demand and over 460,000 farmers - One Acre Fund is now excited to begin diversifying our seed product offering to potato seed. We require a candidate who is willing to make it their life's mission for the next two years to grow the best quality seed for Rwandan farmers and to navigate any challenge this process throws at them with patience, positivity, and passion. This project aims to bring the highest quality potato seed to tens of thousands of Rwandan farmers. This work will create hundreds of thousands of dollars of impact by increased harvest and nutrition for farm households within the next two years.
Reporting to the Seed Department Manager you will:
Lead the development and introduction of our potato seed portfolio
- Bring over 1000 MT of certified seed to market in our first year – enough for an estimated 10,000 farmers
- Develop relationships with local and international providers of germplasm and existing mini-tuber suppliers to guarantee a supply of pre-basic seed
- Select varieties to produce suitable for our market - high yield, disease resistance, and ware potato characteristics
- Develop flagship pre-basic, basic and certified seed production farm(s)
- Develop our existing partners and new partners into quality early generation potato seed producers
- Where beneficial/necessary build partnerships with government organizations, regulatory bodies, farm cooperatives, seed companies, and other partners to ensure the success of the program
- Work with the local authorities to ensure all seed meets the required standards:
- Develop a lab suitable for phytosanitary testing (ELISA, PCR, and seed quality testing)
- Review current seed testing practices and capacity build where necessary to ensure the Rwandan market meets international standards
- Work with in-country potato centres which are already working to support quality seed production with seed producers
- Provide support on developing the technical elements on funding applications with our Business Development Team and Business Operations Lead
Develop the required infrastructure and systems for long-term success for seed potato
- Build small-medium size cold storage units for pre-basic and basic seed storage
- Rent or build warehousing spaces suitable for certified seed dormancy breaking
- Develop a strategy for infrastructure and investments required for the long-term success of potato seed in Rwanda
- Solve systematic potato supply chain challenges in Rwanda to grow a viable, profitable, high-quality seed business
CAREER GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT
We have a strong culture of constant learning and we invest in developing our people. You’ll have weekly check-ins with your manager, access to mentorship and training programs, and regular feedback on your performance. We hold career reviews every six months and set aside time to discuss your aspirations and career goals. You’ll have the opportunity to shape a growing organization and build a rewarding long-term career.
Across all roles, these are the general qualifications we look for. For this role specifically, you will have:
- Obsession/passion for getting quality seed to farmers (this role will be a lot of work and we need someone intrinsically motivated to make it successful)
- Minimum Master's or 5+ years experience in Seed Breeding or related field - strong preference for potato or horticultural crop breeding
- Entrepreneurial mindset (this is relatively new territory for OAF)
- Operations and project planning experience
- Experience or ability to smoothly work with external partners
- Model business scenarios (can create/maintain complex spreadsheets)
- Experience working with seed potato would be very highly regarded
PREFERRED START DATE
Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, start dates can vary significantly by role. We are adapting rapidly to Covid-19 and most of our team is now working remotely. Given the changing environment, we will appreciate your flexibility in confirming a start date.
Health insurance, housing, and comprehensive benefits
SPONSOR INTERNATIONAL CANDIDATES
Yes; African Nationals are strongly encouraged to apply.
We hire on a rolling basis which means that applications are reviewed and processed on a continuous basis until a hire is made.
One Acre Fund never asks candidates to pay any money or pay for tests at any stage of the interview process. Official One Acre Fund emails will always arrive from an @oneacrefund.org address. Please report any suspicious communication here (email@example.com), but do not send applications or application materials to this email address.
We are committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, gender, gender identity or expression. We are proud to be an equal opportunity workplace.