Leading global broiler breeding company Aviagen has selected Billy Hufford as its business manager for the Rowan Range brand in North America. This line focuses on the slower-growing poultry market segment, which is experiencing an increase in popularity throughout North America.

Hufford will develop sales, marketing, and production strategies for the Rowan Range and other breeding stock targeted to this market. He will report directly to Aviagen Vice President of Sales and Technical Service for North America Frank Dougherty

Interest in slower-growing breeds has soared, with leading North American food service companies, grocery stores and restaurants—including Whole Foods, Panera Bread, Chipotle, TGIF, Compass Group and Aramark—recently announcing a move toward these breeds.

Aviagen has invested in the resources to effectively address this growing market and with Hufford’s appointment has sharpened its focus even further.

“Hufford commands the right balance of R&D and poultry genetics expertise, market foresight and customer service experience needed for success in his new role,” says Dougherty. “Aviagen customers will benefit from his judgment, insight and commitment to helping them address the current growing need for slower-growing chickens. I’d like to welcome him to the North American sales team and offer him my full support.”

Hufford’s diverse resume spans more than 20 years of management experience in the poultry breeding, swine and food industries. He has served in various levels of management roles for well-known industry players including Hubbard LLC, Cobb Vantress, McKee Foods (maker of Little Debbie) and Seaboard Foods Inc. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture Education from Oklahoma State University.

As part of its multiple-brand strategy, Aviagen anticipated the need for breeds aligned to the demands of slower-growing, free-range and organic market segments, and for this reason developed the Rowan Range portfolio early on. While strengthening its emphasis on the slower-growing market, Aviagen will continue to advance its well-established conventional Ross and Specialty Males portfolio in North America.

The Rowan Range poultry breed is healthy and hardy, distinguished by a distinctive look and excellent performance. As such, it lives up to the standards of established welfare-accredited growing programs, including the Global Animal Partnership (GAP) animal welfare rating.