BPEX blog

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Performance picks up thanks to manager training

The first Professional Manager Development Scheme has seen everyone on the course achieve great results over the past year, with tangible improvements to pig performance as well as becoming more confident in managing their teams.

Helen Hooks, of East Anglian Pigs, used her first project to look at stockmen’s skills in the farrowing house on her indoor unit. From the new ideas Helen has put in place, piglets born alive have increased by half a piglet per farrow on average and the unit is now seeing 12 to13 piglets born alive, with an average of 11 piglets weaned per farrow. AI planning is a major area where Helen feels she has saved money: “To calculate the doses of semen required for service we used to multiply the number of sows to serve by three and, having looked more closely at what actually happens in the service house, we now multiply it by 2.25.” This means savings of roughly £2.60 per sow.

John Dunning of Kenniford Farm in Devon has changed the unit’s breeding programme so, instead of buying in gilts every month, the unit is now a closed herd and they breed their own replacements – with benefits for health and bio-security.

More achievements by their fellow managers on the course have included reducing pre-weaning mortality, improving staff skills and team-working and modernising their unit.

On 14 April 2011 the group will meet for a final awards presentation and celebratory dinner in Peterborough, including a special student of the year award. It'll be a great opportunity to recognise what they are achieving both personally and for their staff and businesses. Also, guest speaker Joanne Denney-Finch OBE, Chief Executive of the Institute of Grocery and Distribution (IGD), will share her views and experience on supply chain integration and relationships with retailers.

Applications for the next Professional Manager Development Scheme will begin this autumn...

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