‘Experience of a lifetime’: Irish drivers wanted for combine crew…based in US

Young farmers and drivers are being encouraged to apply for “the experience of a lifetime” – to link up with a combine harvesting outfit to cut crops right across the US.

A combine harvesting team based in the state of Arizona – Demaeay Harvesting and Trucking – is looking to hire drivers to add to a diverse line-up taking on the rolling plains of America this year.

The outfit

With a sizeable operation of combine harvesters on the go, Craig Rynhart – originally from Ballycanew, Gorey, Co. Wexford – is looking for 10 more drivers to complete the team for the upcoming season.

Image source Demaray Harvesting
Image source: Demaray Harvesting and Trucking

Craig, who has worked for Demaray since 2010, operating Case IH machinery, spoke to AgriLand about the outfit:

“For the upcoming year we have 14 combines; and then truck-wise we’ve 18 arctic trucks – all Peterbilt trucks.

As far as help and stuff like that, we predominantly hire Irish people – I’d say 75% of the crew would be made up of Irish guys from all over the country. It’s mostly Irish and New Zealand, and then you might get one or two that would be from the states.

Craig explained that he is looking for 10 more drivers to complete the full complement of 32 needed for this year.

“There are no set qualifications needed – young farmers are mainly who I try to target – young farmers or truck drivers.

Image source Demaray Harvesting and Trucking
Image source: Demaray Harvesting and Trucking

“We do a lot of different crops but our main crops would be three main crops: wheat; soya beans; and maize corn,” he added.

The season

“Our season runs from mid-April – we’ll take guys out in mid-April – and then the season will run from then right through to mid-November and we’ll harvest the whole year through.”

In terms of accommodation for drivers, Craig explained: “It is very similar to a set-up in New Zealand; we provide accommodation for all employees and they’re all kind of general worker houses – they’re all approved by the government every year so they’re all decent quality.

We provide accommodation, flights and visa. It’s a 2,000 mile harvest – we harvest from the Mexican border right up to the Canadian border – so you pretty much get to see the country while working – travel while working.

He noted that a range of farms are worked on – including one farm, which produces 70,000 head of cattle – and milks between 4,000 and 4,500 cows which are crossbred especially for milk destined for cheddar production.

“I always maintain for a young farmer that wants to get out and see a bit of the world before going back to take over the farm, it is the experience of a lifetime,” Craig concluded.

Image source Demaray Harvesting and Trucking
Image source: Demaray Harvesting and Trucking

For more information, those interested can get in touch with Craig through the Demaray Harvesting and Trucking Facebook page here.