Claire Bragg - How does the broiler industry need to change to feed an increasing population?
I am married to Nick and live in the South West of England on the edge of the village of South Petherton, Somerset. Currently we farm 500 acres of arable crops, growing potatoes as well as maize and grass leys as fodder for local dairy farmers. In addition to this we run a contracting business which includes a full potato service, min-till, drilling, supplying and spreading of chicken litter. In 2006 we inherited two small old chicken houses at Ilminster, we modernised these houses and subsequently built a further three houses (5,300 m2) at South Petherton and rented another house about a mile away from us – in total we produce 824,000 broiler chicken each year.
We also have a huge passion for showing people where and how their food is produced. We regularly host visits on the farm ranging from Schools, Young Farmers, Rotary Clubs, Government Officials and other Farmers; in 2012 about 1,500 people visited the farm. We are in the process of obtaining planning permission to convert one of our barns into meeting rooms and cookery school to enhance our ability to educate.