Employee picks strawberries in varying weather conditions, while adhering to quality and production standards determined by Company, using physical body motions, including picking fruit, pushing single-wheeled carts and carrying crates weighing up to 10-13 lbs. when full. Employees will be required to harvest strawberries using the harvesting machine and employees will be required to plant the off-cycle strawberry production.
Workers will also perform duties associated with and directly related to berry harvest work, including but not limited to picking and packing strawberries in the field for fresh market and freezing/juicing; Distinguish quality and ripeness; Pick, and place in tray / packing containers in the field. Pickers will work on a strawberry picker machine to aid harvest; working in rows, walking on uneven ground, the worker bends over and picks berries with hands; places the strawberries in a box and stacks the full boxes on the machine floor, the top of the machine carries the empty boxes; the worker, therefore, does not carry the full boxes to the end of the row. Worker may also be required to guide machine using a control remote. Workers may be required to assist in turning the machine around at the end of each row.
Lifting and Carrying: The full box of strawberries, weighing 10-13 pounds when full, is carried to the machine. Most Harvesters carry the full crate on their hip, but some carry it on their shoulder. The picking cart, weighing approximately 3 pounds, is carried between rows. When planting, workers will pick a box of plants with an approximate weigh of 35 pounds and will place it on the row to be planted.
Stooping and Bending at Waist:
Harvester must walk along the assigned row in a bent-from-the-waist position to pick strawberries and place them in the box until it is full. This activity would comprise approximately 75% of the workday. Harvester can opt for squatting, kneeling and crouching instead.
Harvester straightens up each time they complete a full crate of strawberries. This can be anywhere from 5-10 times per hour depending on the production and picking speed.
Harvester would be in a vertical position when walking to and from the checker while getting crate inspected and punched.
When planting, the workers obtain a plant from the box located at the row and will stoop and bend toplant it on the bed. The workers advance through the furrow in a bent position while pushing the box ofplants and while planting.
Harvester would constantly be using a reaching motion when picking. Reaching motion would be down towards the ground. Harvester stands in the furrow and picks off the mound (bed) on either side. The berries are found approximately one foot or lower from the bottom of the furrow.
Pushing with Both Arms: Harvester places the cardboard box in the cart and pushes the cart down the row as he or she picks strawberries. Total weight pushed, assuming a full box of berries will not exceed 25 pounds. When planting, the workers push the box of plants no exceeding 35 pounds.
Noise Exposure: Strawberry machine harvesters will work with harvesting machinery, worker may experience louder than normal range of noise frequency on a frequent basis.