Studying at CAFRE helped Lee bring home the bacon
May 20, 2021
Lee McFarland (Augher) studied on the BSc (Hons) Degree course in Food Management and Marketing at the College of Agriculture Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE). Lee graduated from Loughry Campus in 2013 with an Ulster University validated degree. He entered the fast-paced environment of pig processing beginning his career with Dunbia (Ballymena) as a Sales Graduate. Developing a passion for pork produce Lee was promoted to Site Commercial Manager in 2015.
Shortly after, Dunbia was purchased by Cranswick plc. Lee made a great impact with his new employers being promoted to Group Trading Manager within Cranswick Country Foods to manage their Fresh Sales Division. To give an idea of the magnitude of Cranswick plc, group process in the region of 64,000 carcasses/week, alongside a successful chicken processing business.
Lee is now primarily based in the Group Headquarters in Hull and enjoys the opportunity to return to the Ballymena site as necessary.
“I manage the Group Trading Team who handle over 50 commercial accounts with a turnover in the region of £100m per annum. Trading pork products across the UK and Europe is a daily business. We aim to maximise profits ensuring a stable carcass balance for the operation. Regular communications across the supply chain is essential and our customers are our priority,” commented Lee.
“Looking back at my time at CAFRE, I now really appreciate the support I received from all of the staff. When you are told to roll up your sleeves and get on with it – you certainly do that at Loughry. We had great opportunities to develop through the college’s practical approach to learning. I attribute my career success to the college. Doors were opened to me through CAFRE’s industry connections. I certainly have been keeping them propped open ever since. I highly recommend considering a career in agri-food. Look into the courses on offer at CAFRE. Careers in the food industry aren’t purely food processing, there’s lots of opportunities to follow business paths too.”
CAFRE hosted a series of virtual Open Evenings in the spring. If you missed watching and would like view the food virtual event click here. For food course information click here or call us free on 0800 028 4291.