Dairy industry business course opens for applications

The industry-renowned dairy course ‘Entrepreneurs in Dairying’, run by the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers (RABDF) and sponsored by HSBC UK, is set to return this October and is open to anyone interested in a career in the dairy sector.

Held across four months using a blend of virtual and in-person sessions, the course is designed to equip applicants with specialist business knowledge to aid their career in the dairy industry.

A total of seven sessions will over a variety of topics such as understanding the milk market, business planning, succession planning, future opportunities, people management and tax and trading structures.

In addition, there will be a two-day finance course and a final two-day session on farm, both of which are delivered by The Andersons Centre partner Tony Evans.

“Having been involved in the course since its launch ten years ago I have not only seen how it has evolved but have witnessed first-hand the confidence and success it has brought to a huge amount of its cohorts,” Mr Evans said.

Josh Fincham, who now runs a 270-cow herd in Dorset on a 50:50 contract farming agreement, took part in the course in 2016 when he was herd manager for a 400-cow split block unit.

He said enrolling in the course gave him the confidence to set up and manage his own dairy business.

“Entrepreneurs in Dairying teaches you everything you need to know about running a business, such as accounts and people management, not only this but it taught me life lessons I didn’t even realise I needed to know.”

The scheme has continued to grow in popularity since its inception, and with over 20 people having already registered their interest for the upcoming course, anyone interested is encouraged to get in touch sooner rather than later to avoid disappointment.

The training programme also emphasises RABDF’s continued commitment to developing the next generation of dairy entrepreneurs, said the association’s managing director Matthew Knight.

“It’s great to see the course as popular as ever, with so many people still keen to enrol each year, the benefits and opportunities it has opened up to past cohorts speak volumes in terms of demonstrating its success, and it is an initiative we are proud to manage.”

Emily Collins, AHDB knowledge exchange manager, added: “AHDB is proud to support the programme which helps build knowledge and confidence in people looking to succeed in the dairy industry whether that’s as a dairy herd manager, a tenant or in a joint venture.

“We’ve received some fantastic feedback from previous attendees about how it has helped develop their careers and would encourage anyone thinking about joining this year to get their application in.”

The course starts in October and a full schedule of dates and topics will be released shortly. Forms are available to download at http://www.rabdf.co.uk and the course costs £490+VAT.

Applications must be submitted by 1 September, however spaces are expected to be filled before this date. There are also a handful of subsidised spaces available, and those interested should contact ambermckay@rabdf.co.uk for further information.

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