The British Limousin Cattle Society is delighted to announce that Debbie Butcher has recently joined the organisation. She has been appointed to the new position of Communications & Marketing Manager. Bringing a wealth of practical industry experience to the Society Debbie has been working as the Senior Beef and Lamb Analyst with the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) for the past 10 years or so. At AHDB, Debbie has built a particularly strong knowledge and understanding of the beef industry. She has acted as a voice of the sector on market intelligence and production related matters in the UK, the EU and further afield. As well as producing weekly and monthly publications she has developed close working relations with many key industry bodies and the wider supply chain. She also has an awareness of related legislative and policy developments.
Speaking about her appointment Debbie commented
“As the Agriculture industry speculates on what the Brexit vote means for the United Kingdom’s beef farmers, pedigree and commercial, there is no doubt that changes and challenges are on their way. The industry is already moving to one being more driven by efficiency and profitability. There is little doubt that cattle with the genetics to convert food efficiently, reach slaughter weights earliest and deliver carcases consistently hitting target grades will be in greatest demand; they already are. Retailers have been sending a clear message for some time about the size of the carcase they want. The change in market focus is one that I think fits the Limousin breed extremely well; medium sized cows delivering fast growing quality calves with top grades, good yields and high killing out percentages. With this in mind, I am delighted to be bringing my experience to the Society as I start to work on behalf of members promoting the Limousin breed and the work of the Society to every level of the beef industry.”
Debbie has already seen the breed at first hand attending Borderway’s annual May Limousin Sale where averages, for bulls and females, were notably up on last year. Providing evidence of the current dynamics of the trade, and the momentum for the Limousin breed, commercial producers were clearly willing to pay top prices for their bulls of choice to deliver the performance and efficiency they are looking for.
Commenting, BLCS Chief Executive Iain Kerr said: “This is a key appointment for the Society and we welcome Debbie to the team along with the wealth of relevant industry knowledge, contacts and experience that she brings. Communication, promotion and knowledge exchange of the Society’s breed development work, commercial relevance, and ongoing achievement and performance, is so important. Debbie’s appointment will increase the Society’s professionalism in delivering these key messages to every level of the beef industry.”
Since the first imports of the Limousin breed in 1971, the breed has become the number one beef breed in the UK, by some margin. Looking ahead, the Society’s ongoing feed efficiency project, in conjunction with AHDB and Defra, will demonstrate how feed efficiency traits can be measured and selected for. This will provide significant opportunities for commercial beef producers to cut their cost of production while delivering the message that Limousin cattle are the most viable and profitable breed for beef production in the UK.
Debbie will be in attendance at as many of the shows and events taking place over the summer season as possible, meeting members at large. She will be robustly driving this message on behalf of the Society and its members at every opportunity across the entire supply chain.