Tony Bell, who retired from his role as raw materials director at feed manufacturer ForFarmers last year, has been appointed to the AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds Sector Board from next month. Since leaving ForFarmers, he has devoted his time to the 250 hectare family arable farm at Thorpefield in North Yorkshire in partnership with his wife and brother.
Mr Bell started his career at BOCM Silcock, then owned by Unilever, in the mid 1970s as a commodity buyer. He moved to Unilever's head office in Rotterdam to buy oils and fats for its European operations for a spell in the 1980s before returning to the UK in 1989 to manage Unitrition, BOCM’s specialist seed crushing business in Selby.
In 1997, Mr Bell was appointed raw material director of BOCM Pauls, retaining the role after the business was acquired by ForFarmers in 2012. He was responsible for the team buying two million tonnes of feed materials each year; formulation of diets; and raw material logistics.
“It’s great to have Tony’s experience as we focus on our priorities of improving on-farm productivity and competitiveness of UK grains, ” states Martin Grantley-Smith, AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds sector strategy director. “With a lifetime spent in the animal feed sector, he will bring greater clarity to the production of feed grains, which accounts for about 63% of cereals production in the UK.
“Meeting the UK feed industry’s needs more closely will reduce waste in the supply chains and improve the UK’s competitiveness. Tony will provide valuable advice to the board on how AHDB can help bring this about.”
Mr Bell adds: “On retiring from ForFarmers, I felt I wanted to utilise my experience from the processing world. The opportunity to be on the AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds Board was unique, as I feel I can contribute from my experience both in the animal feed sector and as a farmer.”