fruit picking kent jobs

Fruit Picking Kent Jobs: A Practical Guide

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So if you are considering fruit picking Kent Jobs to earn some extra money, and you are on a mission to find some of the best fruit picking jobs in Kent, UK.

Well, look no further. I got your back!

Money is the biggest worry for most travellers (including myself). Hence, a lot of them have resorted to working while exploring the world. 

Fruit picking is one of the most popular jobs among travellers. 

For some, fruit picking has earned them a decent amount of money that helps them pursue their adventures around the world.

Kent is a place that is rich with farms and orchards and is an excellent place to start your fruit picking job.

This article will fill you with everything you need to know about fruit picking Kent jobs.

Here is what you will learn:

  • Where To Find Fruit Picking Kent Jobs?
  • Where is Kent? 
  • What Makes Kent Special For Fruit Picking?
  • How To Be A Fruit Picker In Kent?
  • Apply For Fruit Picking Jobs In Kent
  • How Much Do Fruit Pickers Get Paid In Kent?
  • How Much Does The Average Fruit Picker Get Paid in The UK?
  • What Is Kent Famous For Growing?
  • Best Season To Fruit Picking In Kent
  • Is Fruit Picking A Hard Job?
  • How Do You Dress For Fruit Picking?
  • Things You Should Know About Kent

DISCLOSURE

Some of the links on here are affiliate links and I may earn if you click on them, AT NO EXTRA cost to you. Hope you find the information here useful! Thanks.

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Where To Find Fruit Picking Kent Jobs?

To start your search on fruit picking Kent jobs, it will be worth it to start looking at these four districts:

  • Swale 
  • Maidstone
  • Canterbury and 
  • Tunbridge Wells

They are the four largest fruit and vegetable growers in Kent, according to Kent County Council statistics. Moreover, Swale and Maidstone are the top districts in England with the highest number of agricultural workers. 

Hence, making them the best place to look for fruit picking jobs in Kent.

Here are some of the farms that you can look into:

Fruit Picking In Swale, Kent

Fruit Picking In Sittingbourne, Swale

Fruit Picking In Faversham, Swale

Fruit Picking In Maidstone, Kent

Fruit Picking Jobs In Canterbury, Kent

Fruit Picking In Tunbridge Wells, Kent

Most of the farms listed provide accommodation to their workers with small charges between GBP55 (USD75) and GBP60 (USD82) per week.

Other Places To Look For Fruit Picking Kent Jobs

Additionally, you may also check out other farms located all across Kent as follows:

  • Pro-Force – Organisation that connects seasonal fruit pickers to farms throughout the UK
  • G’s Fresh – Europe’s leading fresh produce company that connects with farms throughout the UK
  • Search Fruit picking jobs near me using your favourite search engine 

Where Is Kent?

fruit picking kent jobs

So I have talked about where to find fruit picking in Kent jobs. But where exactly is Kent?

Kent is a county located in the southeast of England, where Maidstone is the county town. 

It is one of the warmest parts of the UK.

Kent is bordered by Greater London to the northwest, East Essex to the southwest, Surrey to the west, Thames estuary to the north and the English Channel to the southeast.

It is merely an hour away from Greater London by road or rail, which makes it accessible to commute. It is the best place for fruit picking if you stay in London.

Kent is rich with a beautiful coastline that stretches through beach towns and villages, stunning castles, exciting cultures, and delicious food and drinks, making Kent one of the places in the UK that you should not miss visiting and maybe choose to work as a fruit picker.

What Makes Kent Special For Fruit Picking?

Well, Kent hasn’t been known as the Garden of England for hundreds of years for nothing.

Aside from producing world-renowned Kent hop and recently finest ales and wines, it also has an immense number of fruit-laden orchards such as cherries, plums,  apples, pears, strawberries, etc.

Kent is known for the quality of fruit supplies throughout the UK.

Compared to the South West region, for example, Cornwall. Despite their warmer climate, their fruit industry is not as big as Kent.

Hence, there aren’t many fruit picking Cornwall jobs available.

Therefore, Kent is the best place in the southern UK for fruit picking since there are plenty of fruit picking jobs all across Kent.

If you love living in orchards while having delicious fresh juices or perhaps sipping a glass of wine with some lovely Kent Lent Pie, then why not go fruit picking in Kent?

A sure fantastic way for you to enjoy a countryside life and at the same time earn some money.

Furthermore, Kent boasts various interesting iconic spots, from the world’s oldest religious building to royal homes and captivating scenery that would make your stay in Kent worth a lifetime.

How To Be A Fruit Picker in Kent?

It is pretty simple to be a fruit picker in Kent. You are merely required to meet the requirement as follows:

  • Age: 18 years and above
  • Fitness level: Fit and healthy 
  • Language: English
  • Experience: Not required. However, it will be beneficial if you have any.
  • Eligible to work in the UK. If you are not entitled to work in the UK, do not worry! I will explain in the next section how you can be qualified.
  • Have a UK bank account (Most farmers will pay your wages via bank transfer). If you do not have a UK bank account, you may set up a Transferwise or Revolut borderless account to receive your wages. It will take you 3 mins to set up UK bank details.
  • Willing to do repetitive work for long hours such as lifting, bending, standing, climbing, twisting, etc
  • Someone who is a team player and has a positive attitude has a strong commitment and attention to detail.

How To Apply for Fruit Picking Jobs in Kent?

fruit picking kent jobs

If all the requirements are satisfied, then what are the procedures to get fruit picking Kent jobs?

Rest assured! I will tell you how.

In this section, I will share with you a step by step guide on how to get fruit picking jobs in Kent:

  1. Check The Seasons

The harvest period for each fruit is different, depending on the weather and crop conditions at that time. 

If you are keen to travel and see the gorgeous Kent countryside, following the harvest trail will be great for you. It will help you plan out your travels as well as finding fruit picking opportunities in Kent.

If you want to know about the harvesting season in Kent, then scroll further.

  1. Make Sure All Relevant Working Visa Or Permit Ready

If you are not a British citizen, it is essential to ensure you have all the working visas or permits ready.

You are not entitled to work in Kent or any part of the UK if you do not have a UK working visa or permit.

Working Visa For EU Citizens

Starting in 2021, if you or your family members are from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, or Liechtenstein, you are qualified to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme.

With this scheme, you can work in Kent or any part of the UK for a duration of 5 years.

Although the deadline for the application has already passed, which is on 30 June 2021, you can still apply for the scheme if you meet one of these criteria:

  • You have lived in the UK by 31 December 2021, and you need to make a late application due to reasonable justifications or
  • Your family member has a UK pre-settled or settled status.

Or else, you will need a work visa or permit to get fruit picking jobs from 2021 onwards in Kent.

 Working Visa For Non-EU Citizens

For non-EU citizens or EU citizens who are not eligible for the EU Settlement Scheme, you may apply for the following visa to be entitled to get fruit picking jobs in Kent:

  • Graduate Visa – Applicable to those who wish to continue staying and working in the UK for at least 2 years, after completing a course in the UK

Some farm employers will assist with the visa application process since some visas require a sponsor. On that account, it is wise to check with each farm or recruiter if they offer assistance with the visa application.

You may click on the links to further understand the visa requirements and how to apply for them.

  1. Look For All The Available Fruit Picking Kent Jobs
fruit picking kent jobs

Kent’s agricultural industry has a wide range of fruit picking jobs on offer.

Look and list as many fruit picking jobs as you can find. The more you apply, the higher the chances for you to get the job.

There are plenty of ways for you to look for fruit picking Kent jobs. First, you may start by checking out all the options listed in the first part of this article. 

Another way is by using conventional methods such as:

  1. Research On All The Jobs You Found

Likewise, ensure you do some research on each job you find before applying for them.

Here is what you should do:

  1. Get on Google Maps and find out where exactly the place is.
  1. Do a background check on the company. What is its name? Is the company legit? Etc.
  2. Learn about the work conditions.
    • What is the climate?
    • kind of work will you do
    • What are the potential hazards?
    • What are the working hours? 
  1. Learn about payment terms, accommodation, and transportation. 

This information will give you an idea of what to expect as you live in the orchard. So, you will be able to manage your expectations and get the best experience possible.  

Plus, you will be prepared with all the necessary items to bring to ensure your fruit picking Kent jobs experience is pleasant.

  1. Apply As Early As Possible

Fruit picking jobs in Kent are in high demand. As soon as they become available, the spot is taken pretty fast.

Therefore, apply as early as possible to increase the chances for you to get fruit picking jobs.

Fruit harvesting season usually starts in early June. Hence, April is the best time for you to start looking and applying for fruit picking Kent jobs.

Alternatively, if you are in the area, you can just visit the farm directly to apply.

  1. Provide All The Necessary Information

Finally,  make sure you have provided all the necessary information to the employer when applying. 

Here are some of the important details that you should include:

  • Make sure that all the requirements are satisfied.
  • List all the related skills that you have. You can add skills related to your fitness, for instance, sports, to show your fitness level.
  • List all the related experiences, if you have one. 

Once you have submitted your application, it will take around 1 or 2 weeks for them to contact you if your application is successful.

Also, do a follow up if you do not hear from them within that duration to know the status of your application.

How Much Do Fruit Pickers Get Paid in Kent? 

fruit picking kent jobs

The UK implements the piece-rate system to calculate the wages of fruit pickers, including fruit picking in Kent.

The piece-rate system is a system where the wages are calculated based on output and not on time. Meaning, you will have to put more effort (pick more fruits) to get higher pay.

However, the minimum amount you will get is no less than the minimum National Living Wage. An hourly rate set by the British government, which changes every 1 April.

Here is the minimum wage as of 1 April 2021:

  • The Fruit pickers between the ages of 18 and 20GBP6.56 (USD9) per hour 
  • Fruit pickers between the ages of 21 and 22 GBP8.36 (USD11.43) per hour
  • Also Fruit pickers at the age of 23 years old and aboveGBP8.91 (USD12.18) per hour

A good fruit picker in Kent usually can earn around GBP400 (USD547) per week. However, fruit pickers are often seen earning more than the average depending on their performance.

How Much Does The Average Fruit Picker Get Paid In The UK?

Fruit pickers in the UK, earn around GBP350 (USD485) to GBP500 (USD693) per week on average.

Yet, this can change depending on weather, crop, and labour conditions.

For example, there is currently a labour shortage. It was reported that farm employers have increased the wage rates up to 60% to have more workers on their farm and to prevent the fruits from rotting on the trees.

What Is Kent Famous For Growing?

fruit picking kent jobs

As one of the warmest areas in the UK, Kent is famous for growing hops. And Kent has the first English hop garden ever created in England.

So, to any beer lovers, perhaps a hops farm will be an incredible place for you to work as pickers. Maybe, you will get a chance to learn about making beers too.

Aside from hops, Kent has been growing various types of fruits throughout the county.

Roughly 90% of cherries in England are grown in Kent.  Hence, making it the most grown fruit in Kent, followed by plums and apples.

Kent is also a proud supplier of the famous Wimbledon Strawberries

Every year more than 34.8 tons of strawberries are picked and consumed during the Wimbledon Tennis Tournament

Each strawberry that they supply must be between 25mm-45mm, perfectly red, and without any defects at all.  

Mind-blown!

If you are looking for fruit picking Kent jobs involving cherries, strawberries, plums, and apples, you are lucky as Kent is rich with those fruits.

What’s more, Kent is also known for its finest wine. Thus, it is the home of over 45 vineyards which all are members of Wines of Great Britain, an association for the British wine industry.

Best Picking Seasons In Kent?

Harvesting season in Kent usually starts in early June, with the peak season from July until October and ends in November.

So summer and autumn are the best seasons for fruit picking in Kent.

Summer fruit picking jobs in Kent (June – August) commonly consist of picking soft fruits such as strawberries, cherries, blueberries, gooseberries, plums, blackcurrants, raspberries, etc.

While autumn seasons (September – November) usually involve apples, grapes, pears, and pumpkins.

If you are interested in picking hops, hops usually are harvested in September.

Is Fruit Picking A Hard Job?

Yes, fruit picking is a hard job that requires hard work.

The work often requires you to start early in the morning to bend, climb, stand, and carry heavy weights for long hours. 

Besides that, you also have to work in a fast-paced environment. 

Meaning you have to pick as much fruit as possible to meet the daily target. If you can’t meet the target repeatedly, you are likely to lose your job.

Hence, this job might not be suitable for some people. 

For that reason, it is crucial that before you proceed with this job, you have done your research to prepare and ensure you can deliver the tasks.

As an example, you can do research and learn how to pick fruit efficiently on youtube to help you prepare for the job.

But, if you look at it from a different perspective, fruit picking jobs can be pretty interesting despite the hard work: 

  • the opportunity to meet and learn from people of different cultures
  • You can understand more about yourself as you push yourself to your limit 
  • You get to embrace the beauty of nature and sometimes you can get free fruits from the farm!

Isn’t that exciting! 

If you think fruit picking Kent jobs are something that you can do, give it a go! I bet it will be worth it!

How Do You Dress For Fruit Picking?

fruit picking kent jobs

Fruit picking in Kent often involves working outdoors, where you will deal with dirt, thorns, sunburn, heat, and lots of physical activities.

Dressing incorrectly might result in you feeling uncomfortable throughout the day and affect the productivity of your work.

Therefore, it is necessary to dress comfortably when fruit picking.

Here is how you should dress for fruit picking:

  • Wear a long-sleeve T-shirt or shirt and long trousers to protect you from scratches.
  • Wear clothing that is made from breathable materials such as cotton to provide comfort during hot days.
  • Choose clothing that you don’t mind getting stained.
  • Wear comfortable shoes and ones that you don’t mind getting dirty (if you have boots, that’s even better!).
  • Avoid wearing sandals or flip-flops for safety and to avoid bug bites.
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect yourself from the sun.
  • Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from UV light.
  • Always have a raincoat with you, in case of rain.

Things You Should Know About Kent

Kent, also known as the Garden of England, is also claimed to be the oldest county in England. Hence, it is full of fascinating history and facts that you should know about Kent.

Here is a list of 10 exciting things you should know about Kent:

  1. The world’s oldest horse fossil, Hyracotherium, was found in 1838 in Herne Bay, Kent.
  1. Pocahontas –  inspiration for the Disney film – was buried in the Kentish port of Gravesend.
  1. Fordwich, Kent is the smallest town in the UK.
  1. The famous gipsy tart came from the Isle of Sheppey, Kent.
  1. The legendary comedy act duo Laurel and Hardy opened the famous Kent attraction The Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway in 1947.
  1. Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent, is one of only three Royal towns in the UK. 
  1. There are underground attractions in Kent like Margate Shell Grotto and Chislehurst Caves.
  1. Kent is home to the tallest Roman building in the UK.
  1. James Bond writer Ian Fleming had a holiday home in St. Margaret’s Bay, Kent.
  1. Kent is the home of Britain’s most haunted village called Pluckley.

An Experience Worth Adding To Your Adventure

There you go, all you need to know about fruit picking Kent jobs.

Despite the exhaustion, intense muscle pain, and mental strength, fruit picking is an experience that is worth it in a very humbling kind of way. 

It builds your stamina and strength, creates new friendships, improves your mental health, and of course, earns some money!

Blessed with beautiful orchards and farms, the oldest historical buildings, enchanting scenery, and delicious Kent delicacies make Kent the best place to start fruit picking jobs.

An experience worth adding to your adventure.

.

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