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Industrial Worker Farm/ Dairy

Job Description

Industrial Worker Farm/ Dairy- Livestock Production Sciences Branch


VANRATH are delighted to be working in partnership with the Agrifood and Biosciences Institute to hire Industrial Worker within their Livestock Production Sciences branch based in Hillsborough.

This is a permanent, full-time role. Working hours are Monday to Friday with Flexitime options.

Livestock Production Sciences Branch

The aims of the Branch are to develop and sustain an integrated research effort with national and international recognition in sustainable livestock production and welfare systems, thereby

  • developing sustainable practices within a competitive industry
  • providing a scientific basis for government policy and
  • enhancing the quality of the environment.

The work of the Branch links fundamental science to systems level research to deliver innovations for the agri-food sector and scientific knowledge in ways that assist policy makers and industry partners. An innovative approach is taken linking large-scale applied research studies undertaken on farms across Northern Ireland to strategic research and development at AFBI Hillsborough and further to more fundamental research in partnership with other AFBI Branches and external research organisations.


Job role:


The duties of the post are likely to include the following:

Farm (approximately 6 months of the year)

  • Daily pre-operation checks on each machine used, ranging in size of up to 200hp+ 4 wheel drive tractors, Self-Propelled Silage harvester, Telescopic Handlers, 3 Tonne Counterbalance Forklift, Rubber Tyre Excavator, Tractor, and loader, ATV/RTV.
  • Driving land-rovers, cars and pickups plus attached assorted trailers (licence permitting) belonging to AFBI on public roads, when going to the different sites, farm walks and events.
  • Operating a large range of farm equipment such as Slurry Tankers (Dribble Bar, trailing shoe, and transfer boom), Slurry Pumps, Silage Trailers, Dump Trailers, Bale Trailers, FYM Spreader, Fertiliser Spreader, Power Harrows, Plough, Rotavator, Field Rollers, Grass Mowers, Grass Rake, Grass Tedder, Balers (round and small square), Bale Lifters, Umbilical Slurry Application System, Sprayers, Seed Drills/Air Seeder, Grass Topper, Straw Chopper, Post Driver, Zero Grazer, and Diet Feeders.
  • Mixing slurry in both underground and above ground tanks.
  • Using GPS and Isobus for sowing fertiliser, spraying, seed drills and slurry application.
  • Manual work using brush, shovel, power hose, strimmer, leaf blower, hedge trimmer, chainsaw, erection and dismantling of temporary and permanent fences, silage barriers and covering silos.
  • Assisting in the operation of an animal feed concentrate mixing plant with bulk and 25kg manual bag handling.
  • Assisting scientific staff in the handling of livestock for the purposes of taking measurements and animal health procedures.

Dairy (approximately 6 months of the year)

  • Milking duties, including bringing cows to and from fields and houses for milking, preparing cows for milking, milking cows, maintaining hygiene throughout the milking process, maintaining parlour cleanliness.
  • Feeding cows, including preparing experimental rations to specific experimental requirements, normally using a telescopic handler, tractor and mixer wagon, but also by hand or using a mini mixer.
  • Pasture/grazing management, including sowing fertiliser, mowing paddocks using a mower, harvesting grass using a zero-grazer, weed control, allocating pasture, setting up fence lines, checking water troughs.
  • Maintaining high animal health and welfare standards, including identifying and treating sick animals, routine health management, vaccination, hoof care, assisting veterinary practitioners.
  • Fertility management, including heat detection, artificial insemination, assisting at calving, and ensuring the health and welfare of calves and cows at birth.
  • General livestock management duties, including bedding cow houses/cubicles and calving pens (for example, with straw, sawdust and lime), clipping cows.
  • Recording detailed herd health and management details, both electronically and hard copy, as appropriate. Assisting scientific staff to take measurements.
  • Maintaining overall cleanliness and tidiness of the dairy unit, including cleaning and disinfecting animal accommodation, brushing, power hosing, grass cutting, weed control/management, silo management.
  • All types of general farm duties, and any other duties that may arise, including young-stock management.
  • Conducting an evening check of animals within the herds, which may include checking youngstock and calves.

The Ideal Person

  1. Be able to demonstrate, by way of examples, that they have at least 12 months experience during the last 5 years of working in an agriculture environment and driving large 4wd tractors 110hp+.
  2. Be able to demonstrate, by way of examples, that they have experience of silage making operations.
  3. Be able to demonstrate, by way of examples, that they have experience of mixing and spreading slurry.
  4. Have a full driving licence which enables the holder to drive a car in Northern Ireland.

Salary & Benefits

  • £22,519.00 per annum
  • Unbeatable pension
  • 37 days annual leave (including statutory and public holidays)
  • Flexitime
  • A range of other public sector benefits!

For further information on this vacancy, or any other Built Environment roles in Belfast or wider Northern Ireland, please apply via the link below or contact Chris Haddock in the strictest confidence.