R&D Team

Getting to know Samantha

Sam is our Research & Development Manager with a demonstrated history of working in the food production industry.

She has hit the ground running this past year with varied roles involving running trials and research, looking at anything from nutritional products through to robotics and novel environmental sensors, all with the aim of improving health, welfare, and performance in the broiler industry
I did manage to grab her attention away from the robotics just long enough to ask her a few questions…

Where did your passion for livestock come from?

I Grew up on a small farm in Nottingham breeding fancy breed chickens and running a horse livery yard and as a riding instructor. So it started from an early age, I then went to Riseholme agricultural college in Lincolnshire, focusing my studies on livestock production. 

Did you then go on to university? What did you study?

I went to Harper Adams University to Study for a BSc Hons degree in Animal Health and Welfare. I completed my dissertation, receiving a 1st, in antibiotic use and biosecurity in pheasant farming. The degree studied a wide range of animal production systems and sciences from parasitology to genetics and reproduction to animal behaviour and welfare. 

Tell me more about your scholarship…

Whilst at Harper Adams I won a scholarship through the British Poultry Council and Faccenda foods (now Avara) and spent my placement year based in Yorkshire in the turkey business, mainly focussed on Christmas turkey production. This was a fantastic opportunity for me as I was able to see the whole business working with the breeding and parent farms, the hatchery, grow out farms and factory. This gave me a good insight into the poultry industry as a whole and helped direct me into a job in the poultry industry.  

What was the first step after graduation?

After graduating I joined Cherry Valley Farms as Technical support. Cherry Valley are responsible for providing high quality Duck genetics around the world and I was very fortunate to be able to travel to many countries to see the different production systems and offer advice and support.  

How have your experiences so far help you in your role today?

The range of studies has really helped in my role here, as we now have a system that focuses hugely on genetic performance and production results yet having huge pressures in maintaining and improving animal welfare and health.  

Find out in our next R&D Blog what areas we have been working on over the past year…