New leadership team for Young NPA announced

The NPA has announced the first chair of the Young NPA, as part of concerted effort to promote young people in the pig sector and give them a greater voice.

Wes Udall (main picture), who works in the nutrition industry, will take on the role at the start of 2020, with producer Jack Bosworth and Jonathan McKechnie, who also works in the feed sector, as vice-chairs. The appointments are for one year.

Between them, they will guide the work of the Young NPA group, as well as acting as ambassadors for the pig sector’s next generation. The trio will be part of a YNPA steering group, which, also including the NPA’s Ed Barker and Rebecca Veale, will shape the group’s agenda.

Wes works for ForFarmers UK as their young animal feed specialist, having re-joined the business in September 2018, after successfully completing a degree at Harper Adams University in Agriculture and Animal Science.

Wes said he was thrilled to have been offered and accepted the role as YNPA chairman. “We have so much to be proud of, but I often feel we need to do more to shout about this. Young people are the future of the industry,” he said.

“I want YNPA to be a platform that encourages its members to shape the future of the pig industry by representing their interests and views whatever they may be. It is then down the YNPA to allow our members to be part of the bigger discussions, helping to steer the industry on key challenges and opportunities which will affect its future.

“I look forward to getting the new YNPA steering group together before the end of the year to start on the pressing agenda we have ahead of us.

“I encourage anyone who has ideas about how and what YNPA should be doing to get in touch with me; it’s important that we work for the good of the whole industry not just YNPA. Watch this space for developments.”

Jack BosworthJack is the fourth generation to enter the family farming business, F J Bosworth & Sons, based near Chelmsford, Essex. The business consists of a 540 indoor sow breeder feeder unit, 270 ha combinable cropping, 2 x 50 kW Solar PV systems and a few properties.

He will be supporting producer members under the new structure, members, while giving as much support as possible to Wes.

He said: “It is very exciting to be a part of the new team! I have no doubts that we will all work well together to keep supporting, showcasing and improving our fantastic industry. If you’re reading this and you’re a producer under the age of 40 then please do get in touch with me about joining the YNPA. It is going to be a great year and we would love more people to get involved.”

Jonathan McKechnieJonathan McKechnie is a key account manager for A-One Feeds, and a long-term supporter of YNPA. He will be a point of contact for YNPA’s allied industry members. “I, like all the other candidates, am excited for the year ahead, and am sure that this will bring about a new era for the YNPA and hopefully prepare our members for a better future in the pig industry in the years to come,” he said.

NPA comment

NPA senior policy advisor Ed Barker said: “We have seen the Young NPA grow in size over the last two years and, as a result, it is imperative we harness this enthusiasm by offering as much as we can to our members.

“With Wes driving the Young NPA forward, supported by Jonathan and Jack, we can expect more events for the Young NPA, and greater representation for the next generation of pig producers and allied sectors to external audiences. At a time when we are looking to identify our next leaders in the sector, this will be the ideal vehicle to do it.”

About YNPA

Young NPA brings together young people from across the pig industry to socialise, network, extend their industry knowledge and promote the pig sector.

It is open to pig producers and NPA allied industry members between 18 and 40. There is no entry form or subscription fee as long as long as you or your employers are current NPA members.

YNPA highlights include an annual trip, which this year saw a group 32 members touring Yorkshire, and the YNPA National, which takes place on December 12 in London.

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About The Author

Editor of LBM titles Pig World and Farm Business and group editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer. National Pig Association's webmaster. Previously political editor at Farmers Guardian for many years and also worked Farmers Weekly. Occasional farming media pundit. Brought up on a Leicestershire farm, now work from a shed in the garden in Oxfordshire. Big fan of Leicester City and Leicester Tigers. Occasional cricketer.