LEADING lights in the Scottish poultry industry were recognised recently by the Poultry Club at its 24th annual dinner.

The winner of the 'Young Scottish Poultry Person of the Year' was Amy Campbell, Glenrath, Peebles, while the Howie Surgenor Cup was presented to Barry Thorp as recognition of his services to the industry.

Club chairman, David Montgomerie, spoke about fluctuating raw material costs and recent investments in the industry, as well as highlighting achievements.

“We should remember and promote the fact that poultry meat and eggs are produced and delivered to the retailer with a very low carbon footprint. We are producing food with a lower carbon footprint than farmed salmon, pork, beef or lamb," he said.

"Eggs are even lower than tinned wild tuna, with both chicken and eggs being an economical way of feeding families. I’d like to recognize the joint efforts of companies across the industry in contributing to ever increasing efficiency.”

Barry Thorp is a member of St Davids veterinary team and his connection with the industry began at the age of 12 when he was roped into helping with lambing on a farm in the Cheviots. He went onto attend Glasgow University Veterinary School and his first position was in general practice in Newcastle, followed by a stint as a poultry lecturer back at the veterinary school in Glasgow.

Barry then studied for a PhD at Edinburgh on bone development in chickens, publishing 13 papers on the subject. In 1986, Barry began a four-year stint in Australia as a lecturer at the Melbourne School of Veterinary Science in Victoria, continuing his research on the bones of chickens and marsupials.

Returning to Roslin he led the skeletal disorders group before joining Aviagen, where he spent 11 years, becoming director of veterinary services, before joining St David’s poultry team, before becoming a director.

Rising egg industry star, Amy Campbell, was introduced to poultry production at an early age where, on the home farm, she helped look after 1000 hens. This enterprise grew to 10 sheds, where she learnt that paying attention to detail was fundamental to the scores on the doors.

After leaving school, she furthered her education at Newcastle University studying agri-business and marketing before joining the family poultry business.

Her role there was to set up three 32,000 multi-tier units sharing her poultry knowledge, experience and encouraging the poultry team under her wing. "The production results from her farms were a credit to her and Amy realised that whilst primary production is important, selling your product is a necessity," said Mr Montgomerie in his citation.

"With an eye for detail, artistic flair and marketing theory she developed, launched and marketed Kitty Campbell’s Free Range Eggs and Jolly Eggs; as well as rebranding Big and Scottish. In 2017, Amy was an RBS young ambassador."

Looking for a new challenge, she now manages the only liquid egg processing facility in Scotland – the Smashing Egg Co.

* The late Dennis Surgenor and Tom Howie, who both died in the past year, were stalwarts of the club and were remembered by the introduction of the Howie Surgenor Cup.