As Aviagen’s Business Manager for the Rowan Range in Europe, Claudio Ambrogio is tasked with developing and coordinating sales, marketing and production strategies for Aviagen’s slower-growing and coloured bird portfolio. Ambrogio has spent the past year visiting colleagues and customers across Europe. In this short interview, he reveals his mission for these visits, the insight he gained from them as well as his thoughts on the year ahead.
What has been the focus in your first year as Business Manager for the Rowan Range?
My main objective was to get a deeper understanding of the slower-growing markets in each country and region across Europe to see how we can better support our customers there, both commercially and from a management point of view. This insight is helping us establish the right products for the right markets.
What were the key observations from your European tour?
The main lesson learned is that the landscape of slower-growing birds varies greatly as you journey across the different European regions, and each area is in a different stage of developing the slower-growing market. The region as a whole is complex in its diversity so there is no one-size-fits-all approach.
What are some of the differences that you noticed?
It’s very interesting to see the differences in market drivers. Some markets in the European landscape are motivated by a strong sense of culture and family tradition, while in others public perception and the welfare aspect of slower-growing, coloured, free range and organic birds is further developed and more deeply embedded. And then you’ll see other regions where retailers simply look to slower-growing products as a means of differentiation or the consumer is driving demand through increased spending power. All in all, Europe has a diverse group of cultures, all at different stages in the slower-growing evolution and all with distinct priorities and market drivers.
Where does Aviagen’s Rowan Range fit into the European landscape?
Aviagen’s Rowan Range provides a good solution for this diverse landscape. It offers a variety of product options in terms of growth, colour and other important characteristics for this niche market segment and therefore a solution to a company specialising in conventional production but looking for an alternative, slower-growing breed to a more traditional company looking for a very slow growing breed suitable for organic production.
And what unique characteristics do the products within the Rowan Range offer?
At Aviagen, bird welfare is a core company value. It has always been and will always be the first and foremost priority for our breeding programme. Therefore, the Rowan Range, along with our conventional brands, offers excellent welfare characteristics. In fact, many products within the Rowan Range have been approved by a number of European welfare accreditation schemes such as RSPCA Assured in the UK, Tierschutzlabel in Germany and Beter Leven in the Netherlands.
At the same time, the Rowan Range offers many of the economic benefits the market has grown to expect from Aviagen brands. We therefore have a product range that is not only slower-growing with excellent welfare traits, but at the same time delivers advantages for feed efficiency, a healthy growth rate, strong liveability and high meat yield.
What type of support is available for Aviagen customers using slower-growing breeds?
We have dedicated technical and commercial teams across Europe on hand to support local customers. We also recently released a comprehensive suite of Rowan Range documents that provide best practice advice essential to managing these slower-growing breeds.
Thank you for sharing your insights into the last 12 months Claudio. What will be your focus for the year ahead?
One thing is certain – the landscape of the slower-growing market is ever-evolving so we will continue to watch it carefully. We have an excellent product range available and will continue to develop this based on fields trials, market research and invaluable customer input. Our customers can be assured that we will always work hard to meet their unique needs, developing the right products for their market requirements.