Hannah Barber has worked on a variety of major projects, having taken on an unconventional route into the industry. As she nears marking her fourth year at Premier Nutrition, she continues to push the boundaries while seeking out new opportunities and challenges. We find out more about how Hannah’s role has taken her across the globe.
Q. How did you get into your role at Premier?
A. After graduating from the Royal Veterinary College with a BSc (Hons) in Veterinary Sciences, I completed a PGCE in Biology at Keele University and went into science teaching at a secondary school. After five years, I decided the job just wasn’t for me, so I sought a new career that brought me closer to my original degree.
That’s when I found the support nutritionist role at Premier. It looked like a challenge, but I was worried I didn’t have the right expertise, as my background was in animal health rather than nutrition. However, I was lucky enough to be selected and it was the best decision I’ve ever made.
Q. What different roles have you fulfilled since joining the team?
A. I spent my first year or so working as a support nutritionist, assisting the species teams in an array of different tasks. Following this I went to Vietnam on a secondment to fill a quality support manager role for ISN, an animal nutrition business based in Asia, within the same AB Agri division as Premier.
After spending six months working and travelling around Vietnam, I came home and was able to use the expertise gained at ISN to head up technical, quality assurance and labelling as part of the development and commissioning of our new state-of-the-art factory – Fradley Park.
I’ve worked specifically on Fradley for just over two years, and as we head into
the tail end of the project, I’m now in the exciting position of being able
to shape a new role for myself.
Q. What’s your favourite part of your job?
A. I’m constantly on the lookout for new challenges and this role certainly ticks that box. No two days are ever the same and I’m always being pushed to be the best I can be.
Q. Have there been any stand-out moments in your career at Premier?
A. I’d have to say my time in Vietnam, as I’d only been with the company for a year, which showed the huge amount of trust Premier had in me. I’ve also presented an episode of AB Agri’s internal TV programme, The Download, and hosted last year’s divisional conference, which was a huge honour.
Q. What are your ambitions for the future?
A. I have aspirations to progress up through the business, to a level where I can really influence it and the wider industry, pushing boundaries and challenging the ‘norm’.
I’d like to help bring more diversity into agriculture whether it be gender, nationality or culture. Hopefully I can pave the way for others to make a change, but also increase awareness of agriculture among the public, by helping to introduce schools to farming education through my teaching experience.