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August 2022

Looking back on my year

As my placement year draws to a close, I’ve been reflecting on everything I have learnt during my time with the ForFarmers pig team.

VITAL work!

Afbeelding: VITAL Photoshoot-0722LR-01061

I’m excited to share a project that I’ve been working on – it’s VITAL! After many trials, data interpretation and presentations to the team we are now launching our new Zinc free range, VITAL.

If you’ve not spotted it yet – VITAL is the latest ForFarmers starter feed offering for producers moving to zinc-free before the June 2024 ban. Discover it here

I have enjoyed being involved in such an innovative ForFarmers project. Seeing VITAL through from concept, UK trials to forming the approach to market and working with technical, marketing and account managers, has been an invaluable experience.

I worked on multiple trials, across indoor and outdoor units of various sizes, learning how to collect and analyse data, presenting this back to the team, whilst having important conversations with producers on their zinc-free journey.

Team spirit

Afbeelding: Stephen on farm

I have felt welcomed by the team throughout my placement, nothing has ever been too much trouble and everyone has really supported me.

I have been lucky to work on multiple projects, from a Homemix project with Commercial Nutritionist, Andrew Marriage, to a customer focused project with Account Manager, Jim Gould. I’ve enjoyed working on these individual projects and learning how both Andrew and Jim work with their customers.

Tim Sawyer, Manager of the Young Animal Feed Team, has taught me so much and become a mentor giving me exposure to different business areas, including understanding approach, management and supporting customers.

I have also worked closely with Emma Slater, Pig Technical and Commercial Advisor. Emma’s a former scholarship year student and has provided her insights throughout my placement.  

Being on farm

This year has shown me that no two farms are the same. I have learnt to listen, understand and problem solve to find the right solution. I’ve had exposure to a wide range of UK pig production systems and developed my people skills greatly.

What a year! 

I’m proud of what I have achieved, and it’s been great to gain exposure of different areas of the business. I have been lucky enough to attend high profile events including the National Pig Awards. It’s been such an eye-opening year and I’ve loved every moment.

2023 return

I’m also really excited to share I’m returning to ForFarmers after graduating from Harper Adams University, where I will join the Young Animal Feed (YAF) team as YAF Specialist.

Afbeelding: VITAL Photoshoot-0722LR-01024