James Wilyman, Dairy Specialist

28-5-2021

Department: Sales

Exceptional experience with the team

Soil sampling

“I work within the Welsh sales team which has a fantastic blend of experience and youthfulness. There are two other specialists who work within the team, one youngstock specialist and the other forage."

"As a sales team we also work closely with office based colleagues who specialise in blend formulations, straights trading and bagged products for example minerals, liquids and yeasts."

"Together as a team we provide our customers across the country with an extensive and high quality range of total feed solutions which include dairy, beef, sheep and goats."

“There is a fantastic morale within the team which has been invaluable during the pandemic and consequent lockdowns. We are a close knit group and we’ve all enjoyed the video team meetings as the lockdown haircuts and facial fluff are fully on display.”

BOCM PAULS

“My journey began back in 2002 after graduating from Harper Adams with a degree agriculture. I started as a trainee with BOCM Pauls and I was based in the Denbigh team in North Wales."

“At the time most of my knowledge was beef and sheep related as I grew up on an upland family farm 8 miles inland from Abergele off the north Wales coast. It was therefore a steep learning curve in the world of dairy farming for me, but my colleagues and mentors guided me through without laughing too much at some of my naive questions.”

James

“In 2007 I moved to Pembrokeshire which is where I am now. Over the years I have mentored lots of new trainees and they have gone on to make great Account Managers."

"I have also been the Organic Representative for Wales for many years and recently in the last 12 months I have helped with the role out of a fantastic new rationing programme called Optifeed. Optifeed is an amazing feed evaluation system based on the ‘full cow model’, so not just looking at nutrients but looking where and when they are broken down and utilised within the animal. We have already seen the benefit to the animals and our customers by moving to this new system. This was launched entirely online to the UK teams which was a massive effort by everyone."

Helping customers improve

“My typical day now starts in my home office, I process emails, contact customers and ensure that their orders are correct. Over the last few months we have been able to visit farms again, which has been fantastic to get out and see my customers.”

“The main areas I like to address and help customers improve are:

  • Growing the best quality forage
  • Ensuring the youngstock are maximising their growth and meeting goals such as Target 24
  • Dry cow and transition diets
  • Making sure the milking cow rations are excelling

“At the end of the day, I try to provide the right guidance and products so that my customers improve their herd’s nutrition and farm efficiency. Of course it all has to add up financially and hence we have a whole toolbox with numerous calculators which highlight the costs and savings involved.”

Working from the ground up

"Within my role it is important to have a broad knowledge of livestock nutrition. I also draw on other experts within the company for technical advice. Forage is an area that can be greatly improved on some farms and as a result I work closely with our Forage Specialist who advices on soil sampling, seeds, fertilisers, additives and inoculants. By helping my customers to improve their home grown forage can make a huge difference to their milk quality and quantity.”

“I also try to encourage my customers to do monthly costings with me. This is really beneficial and as the old saying goes ‘if you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it’. By plotting progress on a monthly basis highlights areas that have or could be improved, it also provides a platform for conversations such as new ideas and changes."

"2021 is looking to be a challenging year for forage already. In the last few weeks we have seen grass growth well below last year mainly due to some unseasonal frosts keeping soil temperatures down, this has affected the early grazing herds and first cut silage being delayed which puts us on a back foot for subsequent cuts. My role is to help customers prepare and adjust their rations in order to keep their performance and production steady."

Cows grazing

Enjoyment

“I have been working at ForFarmers for nearly 10 years now and within my role there is a great balance between working at home (doing the office bit) and getting out in the countryside talking to farmers and helping them improve their business profitability.”

“I really enjoy working with farmers and seeing their progress over time, this is a really rewarding part of my job.”

“When I’m not working you can either find me exploring the Pembrokeshire coast with my family or out cycling on my road bike.”