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Global Lead Sustainable Agriculture

About the Rainforest Alliance:

We are building an alliance to create a better future for people and nature by making responsible business the new normal.

The Rainforest Alliance works at the intersection of business, agriculture and forests. By bringing diverse allies together we are making deep-rooted change on some of our most pressing social and environmental issues. Together, we amplify the voices of farmers and forest communities, improve livelihoods, protect biodiversity, and help people mitigate and adapt to climate change in bold and effective ways.

Our alliance needs you, whoever you are and wherever you stand. By joining forces with producers, businesses and consumers, we can transform our relationship with the land and forests we rely on. We can make that relationship work better for all.

Together, we can achieve our vision of a world where people and nature thrive in harmony.

Position summary:

The objective of the Global Lead Sustainable Agriculture is to advise on the sustainable production of the crops Rainforest Alliance is active in (with a focus on cocoa, coffee, tea, banana) and related issues to develop and implement policies, tools and systems to tackle these.  

  1. Provide dynamic and creative leadership and coordination for the development and implementation of Rainforest Alliance’s strategy on Sustainable Agriculture, with an emphasis on productivity, IPM and use of agrochemicals;
  2. Support the development of the Sustainable Agriculture Standard of Rainforest Alliance, related tools and guidance and its implementation;
  3. Support the implementation of field programs and projects on increasing the productivity in Rainforest Alliance’s crops in a sustainable way, including Sector Partnerships;
  4. Co-lead innovative program, project, and proposal design and development for interventions within these areas of expertise, including cultivation and support for key partner, company and donor relationships;
  5. Work effectively with other theme leads and technical staff across the organization as well as externally to advance Rainforest Alliance’s overall mission and strategy.

The Global Lead Sustainable Agriculture will be part of the Economics team where he/she will work together with the Global Leads on Farmer Group Strengthening, Living Wage, and Living Income; he/she will report to the Team Lead Economics, being, a/I, the Director of the Global Themes and Partnerships department.


  • Actively engage in thought leadership, advocacy, strategy development, global engagement and leadership;
  • Ensure strategic ambitions are embedded in sector, regional and advocacy strategies and that they are consistently applied across the organization;
  • Support the development and implementation of the certification program, related tools and guidance;
  • Support of the regions with regional strategy, project development and implementation and developing technical capacity on priority themes;
  • Together with the Markets team (tailored programs), engage and support companies in the development and implementation of thematic strategies;
  • Provide technical advice, evidence and lessons learned and feed back across the organization to regions, supply chains, markets, re-imaging certification and communications;
  • Provide input and guidance to donor and partnerships development;
  • Ensure continuous learning, knowledge management, coordination of communities of practices, awareness raising and technical capacity building across the organization;
  • In coordination with advocacy and partnerships teams, represent the organization at events and conferences.
  • Be the internal and external point of contact for technical topics on productivity, IPM and agrochemicals.


  • Master’s degree or PhD in sustainable agriculture, tropical agriculture or related field;
  • Experience in the sustainable production of at least one of Rainforest Alliance focus crops (cocoa, coffee, tea, banana);
  • Knowledge and affinity to Integrated Pest Management approaches and pesticides;
  • Practical (field) experience of working with producers, especially smallholders, in developing countries.
  • A minimum of 7 years professional experience in program and project development and implementation;
  • Experience in developing and implementing training materials and tools for smallholder producers;
  • Experience in advocating with governments, companies and/or civil society on issues related to sustainable production, sustainability standards, certification or similar;
  • Experience in fundraising, including the design of complex proposals and projects, with bilateral or multilateral donor agencies and company partnerships;
  • Strong writing capacity, including the ability to write for a diverse set of audiences, including local stakeholders, development practitioners, donors and the general public;
  • Thought leader in on topics related to sustainable production;
  • Outstanding interpersonal and communication skills, both written and verbal;
  • Strong team-based orientation and demonstrated familiarity with project management within a team environment;
  • Strong organizational skills and efficient management of multiple tasks and priorities;
  • Fluency in English, both verbal and written. Additional languages in particular Spanish and/or French are an asset;
  • Ability and willingness to travel up to 30% of the time.


Commensurate with experience.


The Rainforest Alliance is an equal opportunity employer. 


Please send your application (max 1 page motivation, max 2 page resume) no later than Aug 31, 2019 to mentioning "Global Lead Sustainable Agriculture" in the subject line. For questions about this position, please contact Laurens van Oeijen via +31 20 5308000 or