Finisher of the Year
William de Feyter runs a 7-100kg straw-based finishing system on two units in Norfolk.
He took on 160 pigs from his father, Edward, at Athills Farm after returning from Harper Adams University three years ago.
William said that he was ‘incredibly humbled’ to have won the award.
The farm consists of two small yards with 60 pigs in each. The piggery has a unique fan system installed, which allows air to be blown across the pens in hotter weather.
He also rents Bristows Farm, with 800 pig places, from a neighbour. A daily scrape-through system there consists of three buildings, with 20-30 pigs per pen.
One recent batch achieved a DLWG of 852g/day and mortality of 2.6%, with FCR at 2.02, and an average carcase weight of 81.5kg.
With Athills being the smaller unit and closer to his home, Williams uses this to rear all the smaller pigs which require more attention. This also ensures the more comprised pigs are kept away from the rest which helps greatly to reduce health and disease issues.
Bristows farm is an older style piggery and despite coming with its challenges, William is still able to do a fantastic job.
The piggery has a unique fan system installed which allows air to be blown across the pens in the hotter weather. This ensures the shed stays clean even through the summer months.
He keeps a close eye on the temperature and monitors the pigs and atmosphere. His stockmanship is reflected in his exceptional performance. FCRs have been some of the best seen and mortality is consistently low. This in turn led to William winning the Best Farm Performance (under 1,500 places) Award at the BQP/Tulip awards event.
William said he has always had a huge amount of enthusiasm for keeping stock and in his own words ‘would much rather be busy looking after animals than being bored sat on a tractor for hours doing arable work’. His enjoyment in working with the animals is very evident.
William has big plans for the future, which include building two new piggeries with 2,000 places near his home farm.
He said: “While I rent old buildings, they seem to work; I’m looking at building my own piggery and winning the award will certainly help me when I go to the banks to borrow the money.”
What the Judges said:
“William does a great job with the smaller weaners, getting them off to a good start”