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We are MDS

The Fresh Produce and Food industry is the largest manufacturing sector in the country and MDS nurtures talented graduates to become future leaders in this innovative, diverse, and sustainable industry. 

About us

MDS is a non-for-profit organisation that was set up in 1986 by a group of forward-thinking growers concerned about the shortage of skilled managers within the industry. Our current membership stands at over 55 businesses which continues to grow year on year. The collaboration of MDS and industry leading businesses has fast-tracked the career of over 500 graduates. 

What will a graduate be doing in the role?

Roles are varied and cover all aspects of the food and fresh produce supply chain, below are some examples of secondments:

• Commercial – A client/customer facing role, that requires multitasking and a high level of coordination. Developing effective business networks with internal and external stakeholders. Supporting the commercial performance, adhering to processes, handling of data with analysis. Previous secondment roles: Corporate Produce Assistant, Junior Commercial Manager, E-Commerce Growth Executive.

• Operations – Plan, coordinate and improve processes across a variety of business functions. High level of technical input, data gathering and reporting that drives growth with strategy support. Previous secondment roles: Operations Supervisor, Site Trainer, Operational Excellence Support.

• Procurement – Directly involved in the sourcing and purchasing of products and services. Sourcing suppliers, contract drafting, negotiation and managing suppliers through the whole procurement process. Previous secondment roles: Assistant Procurement Manager, Corporate Produce Assistant.

• Project / research / trials – Initiate projects, carry out planning by setting goals and objectives. Track work to be completed, set deadlines and delegate tasks. Implement any necessary changes throughout the process. Recording of data and analysis. Previous secondment roles: Junior Project Manager, Change Champion, Development Technologist.

• Farm – Organising and participating in the daily harvesting and analysis. Implement the monitoring of the UK agronomy/field practices, trials and data collection plan for existing crops and new varieties. Previous secondment roles: Deputy Harvest Manger, Planting Manager, Harvest Planner.

• Marketing – Coordination and contribution towards a marketing strategy/campaign. Marketing a product or service. Using a variety of communication platforms internal and external to the business. Previous secondment roles: Digital Marketing, Marketing Officer, Communications Specialist.

• Technical – Ensure quality of the product is the correct specification and quality for clients. Following strict food safety requirements and protocol. Monitor staff operations. Previous secondment roles: Quality Control, Fruit Technologist, Quality and Assurance Account Manager.

Trials Officer - Day in the life


Trainee - Day in the life


Jobs at MDS