NFSCo, the National Fallen Stock Company, has elected former NFU poultry chairman Charles Bourns as its new chairman, following the retirement of the inaugural chair Michael Seals CBE after 20 years in the role.
NFSCo is a Community Interest Company that exists to facilitate the efficient and competitive nationwide service for the collection and disposal of fallen stock.
Mr Bourns (pictured, left) is a well-known poultry farmer from Gloucestershire, who has held various roles in the industry, including chairing the NFU’s poultry board and the EU’s egg and poultry group. He joined NFSCo as a non-executive director in 2012, where he had responsibility for the Poultry sector, and in April 2020 was appointed Company Secretary.
In 2021, he took on the role of Director with responsibility for Information Technology, and oversaw the development and implementation of an app for the fallen stock sector known as KoLeCt.
The new vice chairman is Andrew Blenkiron (pictured, right) who will have responsibility for banking. Since 2011 he has been director of the 10,500-acre Euston Estate in west Suffolk, and is shortly moving to manage the 22,500 acre neighbouring Elveden Estate. He has also recently been the chair of the Suffolk branch of the NFU.
Mr Bourns said: “I am delighted to take up the reins from Michael at such an exciting time for NFSCO. Aside from my long-standing career as a poultry farmer I have also played a role for many years as leader of the poultry sector in the UK and also across the EU and wider world. That experience with UK and international governments and traders will, I am sure, assist me in my new role as chairman of NFSCo.
“The company is going from strength to strength because the model is all about encouraging transparency in the fallen stock sector, at the same time as providing a very simple and quick way of accessing the service, with the support of an efficient and highly trained customer service team that handle tens of thousands of transactions each month, while also sorting out queries and any issues that arise.
“The success of NFSCO over the years is largely down to Michael’s vision, drive and enthusiasm in setting up the company and in steering it through some very challenging times, and as I take over I would like to pay tribute to him and his service.”
The changes at NFSCo come after a period of significant progress in up-scaling the IT element of NFSCO services via the KoLeCt app.
This allows farmers to book collections at any time and to track them in real time, and also facilitates the recording of tag numbers that appear on the invoice. The collection history also stays on the app for three months. KoLeCt, has just hit a major milestone with almost 50% of collection jobs transacted through NFSCO now via the web portal, with every collector in Scotland using it.
The uptake of the app is also expected to receive a significant boost as it is being hosted on the Apple Store and Google Play Store for the first time this week.