Lead Cheesemaker

  • Employee Status:  Year Round; Full-time
  • Start Date:   Immediate opening                 
  • Salary Range:  $18.00/hour. Compensation after demonstrating competence in cheesemaking and processing (approximately 3-6 months after hire): $19.00/hour


Who We’re Looking for

You’ll support one of our many tangible expressions of Shelburne Farms' mission and goals by collaborating with other farm operations in producing, aging, packaging and shipping our excellent cheddar cheese (along with other farm products).  The cheese team is integral to supporting a healthy local food system and providing an inspiring farm-based campus for learning for the organization's various programs and activities.


What You’ll Do

  • Lead a cheese production day throughout every step of the process from the arrival of milk to final press.  Make cheese in either a Lead or Assist capacity on average 3 days per week. Work closely with the Head Cheesemaker to adjust the daily make process based on changes in the milk.

    • It is reasonable for training to last approximately 1-2 months, and competency to be achieved after approximately 6 months. 
  • Assist with cheese processing 1-4 days per week.  This includes preparing batches of cheese to be processed; printing labels; cutting, waxing, packaging, and accurately labeling cheese for retail sale; precise record keeping.
  • Participation in food safety and sanitation programs. This includes daily cleaning and sanitation, record keeping, internal monitoring and quality assurance.
  • Assist with equipment maintenance and calibrations.
  • Participate in our weekly sensory program. Work with our Tasting Team to grade batches of cheese and track cheese quality.
  • Assisting in performing order fulfillment and shipping throughout the year. This will become the main job responsibility during the month of December.
  • Lead Farm visitors through the Meet the Cheesemaker education program that happens daily during the summer (expected after approximately 2-6 months)
  • Become proficient in an additional project or responsibility in the cheese department (expected after 2-6 months). Examples include, but are not limited to:
    • Hauling the milk from the dairy to the cheese facility 1-2 mornings per week.
    • Providing sales and marketing assistance at farmer’s markets, food shows, demos, etc. weekly during the summer and other times as needed.
    • Coordinating the cheese department’s weekly Sensory Analysis Program.


Core Qualifications

Required qualifications that all applicants must have in order to be considered for the job

  • Prior cheesemaking experience required for this role, no matter what type of cheese
  • Able to work four days a week, 10-hour shifts (6:30 am - 4:30 pm), with some overtime depending on the work week


Additional Valued Qualifications

Not required to apply but will greatly assist in your training and onboarding process

  • Passionate about artisanal cheese and excited to become a cheesemaker.
  • Food manufacturing experience.
  • Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), cleaning and sanitation, and food safety.


Work Environment & Physical Demands

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Ability to work up to 10 hour days on your feet in hot and cold environments.
  • We work a 7 day/week, 10-hour shift schedule (6am - 4:30 pm). May require some weekend shifts.
  • Repetitive lifting of up to 65 pounds and stacking blocks of cheese in our coolers.
  • Carrying cheese blocks on a ladder.
  • Repetitive movements of the hands and wrists to perform fine-motor skills.
  • Cleaning chemicals and sanitizers are used.
  • Must be able to understand and use production machinery safely.


  • Medical coverage for employees and their families
  • Health Reimbursement Account covering 80% of the health insurance and Rx deductible
  • Flexible Spending Account for medical and dependent care expenses
  • Voluntary Dental and Vision insurance for staff and their families
  • Paid long term disability and life insurance
  • 401(k) retirement plan
  • Paid time off and sick pay
  • Discounts on farm products and services
  • CSA Farm Share
  • Free or discounted admission to partnering farms and programs

To Apply

  • Please submit a resume and response to the question listed below to our hiring team at jobs@Shelburnefarms.org with “Lead Cheesemaker” in the subject line.
  • In your cover letter, please include the response to the following question:
    • Tell us about your favorite type of cheese and why (it’s okay if it’s not our cheddar - we love all kinds of cheese!).
    • After reading about Shelburne Farms and our Equity statement, briefly address how your experiences, values, and/or efforts demonstrate your commitment to the values of diversity, justice, and equity?
    • How did you hear about the position?

Shelburne Farms is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer. Candidates with diverse backgrounds and lived experiences are strongly encouraged to apply. The duties and responsibilities described herein are not intended to be a complete and comprehensive list; additional tasks may be assigned to this position from time to time, and the scope of the position may change based on operational demands.


$18/hour to start; $19/hour after training
Year Round
Full Time
Date Posted: May 23