Poultry specialist James Wilson has everything he needs to help monitor productivity when he visits his customers, from bird and egg weighing scales to ph. water testing kits, but most importantly he brings 12 years of poultry experience to the kitchen table.
James enjoys his life as a poultry specialist covering the border counties and mid-Wales, but his life could have been very different.
James studied economics at university and was offered a job in accountancy, but he’d had enough of exams and coming from an agricultural background decided to train as a poultryman. He joined Barrington Park Estate for three years before moving to Sutton Estates in Berkshire as assistant farm manager, responsible for the welfare of 24,000 organic free range hens.
After two years developing his experience, James moved to Stonegate in Lincolnshire as area manager responsible for 100,000 birds. In 2017 he went to Mid-Wales Egg Packing before taking a job as Humphrey Feeds and Poultry specialist in April 2018 at the age of 28.
Last year James was one of 16 candidates selected to join the NFU Poultry Industry Programme, spending 18 months on personal development training and visiting farms around the EU.
Before a producer receives a new flock, James is supporting them with advice and he makes sure that he’s with them on delivery day, to help with the preparation and unloading of the birds.
He then visits the farm every week to weigh the birds until they reach 30 weeks, checking that they are achieving optimum bodyweight and developing accordingly in order for the birds to come into lay on target and reach the optimum egg weight.
“While I’m there I listen for any problems the customer may have and offer advice based on my experience. Customers respect my level of knowledge as I have been actively hands on in the past. It’s also very rewarding when a farmer takes my advice and then sees an improvement in production.”
When not working with hens, James enjoys playing all kinds of sports. Many of his weekends are spent on DIY projects around the new house he bought in Llandrindod Wells with his long term girlfriend Kirsty, who also works in the poultry industry.
James loves living in mid-Wales and loves his job travelling the border counties to visit customers on their farms: “I always look forward to meeting new poultry farmers and helping them to optimise their performance.”
Humphrey Feeds and Pullets has been involved in poultry, rearing pullets and manufacturing layers feed for over 80 years. To learn more about their services and team of poultry specialists, call 01962 764 555 or email.