Trainee Livestock Buyer

Company: Kepak
Location: Wales
Salary: Competitive
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Job Title: Trainee Livestock Buyer


Job Purpose:

To coordinate the responsible sourcing of quality cattle and sheep for Kepak (St Merryn) Sites by procuring and booking in cattle and sheep that are suitable for our requirements. To work with farmers who supply livestock to ensure that Kepak farm standards are met at all times and to ensure that they have a positive experience in working with us. To contribute to the reporting and effective delivery of our livestock procedures (using database and IT systems) to help increase the efficiency of our livestock supply.


Job Facts and Figures:

The Kepak (St Merryn) sites (Bodmin, Cornwall & Merthyr, South Wales) processes 3700 cattle and 20000 lambs per week. These are procured from ~4000 Farm Assured farms across England and Wales and must meet stringent legislative and customer requirements. The successful candidate will help farmers to select livestock for slaughter at agreed prices, book in animals, coordinate farm visits / audits as required, resolve any issues that may arise with the supply of incorrect or unsuitable livestock and questions regarding weights/grades/prices paid for cattle and sheep supplied. Candidates will be expected to have / or develop a good technical knowledge of the red meat supply chain. The role will provide input to the Livestock Offices in each location and will involve UK travel. This is a development role for which training will be provided.

Liaises with: Agriculture Manager, procurement teams at both sites, hauliers and suppliers. Site management, lairage staff and security.


Principle Accountabilities and Activities:    

Key Performance Measures:


To provide key account management to allocated farmer who deal with the site so that Kepak and the farmer have a good working relationship and a good understanding of our requirements.

  • Farmers visited regularly and visit reports submitted
  • Farmers with good understanding of Kepak values and requirements
  • Farmers with a good experience of supplying Kepak
  • Farmers able to demonstrate good practice and evidence of meeting Kepak requirements for supply


To ensure an adequate supply of livestock within customer specification available to Kepak (St Merryn)

  • Cattle and sheep booked in for slaughter against procurement targets (numbers and price) and specification
  • Livestock procured meet all legislative and customer requirements
  • Supplying farmers have a good understanding of Kepak values and requirements

To liaise with farmers who deal directly with the site regarding issues of livestock supply

  • Good relationships maintained
  • Issues addressed and farmers embracing continuous improvement

Accurate and timely reporting on livestock booking and procurement, running reports to inform senior management.


Exception reporting

  • Livestock IT systems up to date and containing accurate information for reporting and operations
  • Management aware of issues and exceptions


To liaise with industry bodies, including FSA, vets, suppliers and hauliers to ensure the effective operation of the livestock department


  • Good working relationships and communications evident


Support for the delivery of customer-facing programmes and events/communications

  • Successful events delivered including annual carcass shows and customer events




Proactive communication between livestock team members at Kepak (St Merryn) sites, farmers, hauliers, and industry bodies

Learning & Development

To undertake required training for the job role (including animal welfare training, selection for slaughter and other training as required). Take part in the performance and development review process (PDR).


Health & Safety     

To follow all relevant health & safety protocols and undertake the tasks of the job role as trained.



To ensure that all company rules are adhered to at all times.


Holding a professional manner at all times, particularly during communications with relevant parties.


Qualifications or level of experience required for the job role   


Degree in livestock related subject or equivalent desirable but not essential.

Some practical experience in livestock management – cattle and/or sheep

Good attention to detail

IT literate, experience of databases and CRM systems

Clean driving licence and ability to undertake travel within UK and to ROI as required.

Good communication skills and good team player – ability to liaise effectively with farmers and team members

Ability to be assertive, proactive and to manage own workload

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