Food Safety and Organic Production Area Advisor (Applied Research and Extension) 22-01



Position Overview
The University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR), a statewide program with local development and delivery, is seeking the following UC Cooperative Extension (UCCE) Advisor.


Location Headquarters:  Imperial County, CA


Purpose. The Food Safety and Organic Production Area Advisor will implement an innovative extension education and applied research program addressing issues related to improving food safety management in crop production (pre- and post-harvest) with particular emphasis on organic food production in the CA low desert region.


Food safety and organic food production are the focus of many vegetable growers and farmers in Imperial and Riverside. When food safety prevention steps are not followed, the consequences are outbreaks, recalls, food-borne illness (commonly known as food poisoning), etc..


This position offers the opportunity to address a myriad of issues to improve the quality and safety of perishable produce commodities, develop new or enhanced technologies and diagnostics tools that support the vegetable industry; advance the knowledge of emerging food hazards and contaminants, and improve risk assessment and risk management methods and techniques in food safety. The advisor will develop an organic vegetable research agenda looking at alternative treatments to chemical fumigations and in organic pest management (e.g., soil solarization, biosolarization, and other pest management approaches) with the goal of making these approaches more effective, predictable, flexible, and safe for end-users.


The position involves planning and conducting programs to identify and support actions that create an equitable playing field for underrepresented clientele groups and the farm community; striving to include and advocate for diverse communities.


This position is well-positioned to integrate ANR’s research and extension education efforts across communities to improve the competitiveness, profitability, and resilience of food systems across the region.


This is an exciting opportunity to develop and deliver relevant program content to have meaningful impacts in local communities and throughout California.


Opportunities abound for extension and research partnerships with producers, industry groups, owners, operators and managers of commercial farm operations, other agricultural industry staff, and University of California personnel, as well as numerous local, state, and federal agencies. The advisor joins a team of highly motivated UCCE colleagues who are passionate about their work and are dedicated to making a difference within the communities and throughout California. The potential for collaborative projects within the UC ANR system is nearly limitless.


Counties of Responsibility.  This position will be headquartered in Imperial County and also serves Riverside County.


Reporting Relationship: The CE Advisor serves under the administrative guidance of the University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) County Director of the UCCE Imperial County with input from the Desert REC Director and the Riverside CE Director.

Qualifications and Skills Required
Required Qualifications
Education: A minimum of a Master’s degree in horticulture, agronomy, soil science, soil-water-plant interactions, plant pathology, food science, microbiology or closely related discipline is required at the time of appointment.

Additional Requirements
·   Valid driver’s license.

·   Expectation to be available to work onsite on any day.

Desired Experience
·   Experience in vegetable production, irrigated agriculture, organic agriculture, microbial safety, food safety regulations, methods of statistical analysis, and experience participating in interdisciplinary research is highly desirable

·   Passion and desire to pursue a career in Cooperative Extension

·   Experience in building partnerships and with multidisciplinary teams

·   Demonstrated ability to effectively plan projects, manage teams and implement an applied research and outreach program, including setting measurable goals and objectives

Skills Required
To be successful, the CE Advisor requires skills in the following area:


Technical Competence and Impact


The candidate should have a deep understanding of food safety and agricultural production and be able to design and implement a program that leads to positive changes and impact within the community and beyond. There is an expectation that advisors evolve and grow across their career and respond to changes in the industry and by clientele.




Demonstrated excellence in written, oral, and interpersonal and information technology communication skills.  Public speaking to stakeholders is a routine part of this position.  Spanish language proficiency is desired.


Demonstrated ability to share complex information in a manner tailored to the audience.


Collaboration, Teamwork and Flexibility


Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively as a team member with industry and other stakeholders.  Able to adapt as circumstances warranted.


Aware and willing to actively promote diversity, equity, and inclusion.


Lifelong Learning


Demonstrated commitment to ongoing self-improvement – both professionally and as a person. Ability to shift program focus as times and organizational needs change.


Learn more about Skills and Areas of Programmatic Review (including Professional Competence, University and Public Service and Affirmative Action and DEI) at:


About UC ANR


The University of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) consists of a network of scientists and educators working in partnership across California.  We are committed to developing and supporting practical, science-based solutions that contribute to healthy food systems, healthy environments, healthy communities, and healthy Californians.  UC ANR administers UC Cooperative Extension (UCCE), which is responsible for program development and delivery in the counties throughout the state of California.


Learn more about


·         UC ANR at

·         UC ANR in counties:

·         Our Strategic Initiatives

·         Our Public Value statements at

·         DEI: Further to the above, advisors are expected to share and exhibit UC ANR’s commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

·         Affirmative Action: Further to the above, advisors are expected to share and exhibit UC ANR’s commitment to affirmative action. Learn more of UC ANR Affirmative Action policy:

·         The University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources is committed to attracting and retaining a diverse workforce and will honor your experiences, perspectives and unique identity. We encourage applications from members of historically underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, women, individuals with disabilities, veterans, LGBTQ+ community members, and others who demonstrate the ability to help us create and maintain working and learning environments that are inclusive, equitable and welcoming.


Salary & Benefits
Salary: The beginning salary will be in the Cooperative Extension Assistant Advisor Rank and commensurate with applicable experience and professional qualifications.  For information regarding Cooperative Extension Advisor salary scales, please refer to the University of California website:  If the successful candidate is currently a UCCE Advisor, the candidate will be offered the position without change to the candidate’s current rank, step, salary and/or appointment terms; and if applicable, is eligible to retain indefinite status.

This position is eligible for indefinite status following three successful reviews and subject to terms noted in UC ANR Policy and Procedure Manual, Section 315


Benefits: The University of California offers comprehensive benefits including health insurance, retirement plans, two days per month paid vacation, one day per month paid sick leave, and approximately thirteen paid holidays per year. For more information, refer to the UC Benefits website at:

How to Apply
If interested in this position, please visit: and choose “applicants” (refer to position #22-01)


Closing Date:  To assure full consideration, application packets must be received by

May 31, 2022  – (open until filled)

Contact Tatiana Avoce email:


Applicants may wish to explore the UC Davis Services for International Students and Scholars web page at as a resource.


University of California Cooperative Extension
As a condition of employment, you will be required to comply with the University of California SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccination Program Policy.  All Covered Individuals under the policy must provide proof of Full Vaccination or, if applicable, submit a request for Exception (based on Medical Exemption, Disability, and/or Religious Objection) or Deferral (based on pregnancy) no later than the applicable deadline.   New University of California employees should refer to Appendix F, Section II.C. of the policy for applicable deadlines.  (Capitalized terms in this paragraph are defined in the policy.)  Federal, state, or local public health directives may impose additional requirements.


The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status or other protected categories covered by the UC nondiscrimination policy.


As of January 1, 2014, ANR is a smoke- and tobacco-free environment in which smoking, the use of smokeless tobacco products, and the use of unregulated nicotine products (e-cigarettes), is strictly prohibited.


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