AHDB Pork – Skills & training

Essential to any successful pig business, are skilled and enthusiastic people.

By providing individuals with the opportunity to develop their knowledge and skills, we can help the industry develop professional, skilled and motivated staff. Through our range of training management tools, training courses and qualifications we can demonstrate the career progression possibilities and diverse technical nature of our industry.

Training programmes

Our training courses are open to pig unit staff across the country. There are a range of ways for people to train and learn new skills at every level, from new stock people through to unit managers or business owners. Training offers logical progression of skills development which helps career planning and advancement.

AHDB Pork, skills and training decision tree

SDS COC Stockperson Plus EMP PMDS

All training programmes are registered and advertised on the PigPro system and on the events pages. Training can be completed as full courses or as individual sessions on an ad-hoc basis.

The practical pig production training courses result in a ‘Certificate of Attendance’ but trainees can get further recognition by completing the ‘City and Guilds’ Certificate of Competence.

The ‘Stockperson Development Scheme’ and ‘Stockperson Plus’ courses can help prepare trainees for the Certificate of Competence in Pig Husbandry Skills.

Expression of interest survey

With the current climate being so full of uncertainty, and restrictions affecting events and training, we would appreciate it if you could complete our short survey so we can tailor our training offer to your needs. It should only take a couple of minutes to complete and your feedback will be extremely helpful.

Click the links in the table below for further details on available courses.

Training ProgrammesStockpersonSupervisorManagerOwner
Stockperson Development Scheme      
Stockperson Plus    
Effective Manager Programme ✓   
Professional Manager Development Scheme    
Ad Hoc Workshops

Business & leadership courses for farmers and growers

A wide range of organisations offer continuous professional development (CPD) for people wanting to progress through their career to become business directors and leaders. 

Find out more about these opportunities

Practical pig husbandry videos

A wide range of short video clips that demonstrate practical management techniques on farm.

Written, commentated and demonstrated by industry experts, we show stockpeople and managers how to complete important everyday tasks to help boost their pig production.

Watch best practice videos

The videos are useful for staff training and refreshing knowledge in the different departments on your unit.


PigPro is an online recording system for training. The tool records the details of training and development for you and your staff. It provides secure and easy access to training records to help you understand your businesses training needs but also gathers training evidence that’s needed by some assurance schemes.

PigPro was developed after a review of the PIPR scheme and is designed to be able to adapt to the changing needs of users. 

For help using PigPro or to transfer existing PIPR records, email pigpro@ahdb.org.uk

Find out more about PigPro

Pig Industry Scholarship

The Pig Industry Scholarship, launched by the NPA Allied Industry Group, recruits highly qualified and committed young entrants into the pig industry. The scheme is open to students studying at Harper Adams University in their second year BSc and first year FdSc.

Each year we recruit new companies and we welcome interest from new businesses.

 Benefits to sponsor companies include:

  • Access to high-calibre new employees
  • A ‘year-long interview’ opportunity
  • Increased awareness of your company throughout Harper Adams University
  • Recognition within the industry via our targeted promotion
  • Financial investment is comparable to advertising in national farming press and is often tax-deductible

Find out more about about becoming a sponsor

Trainee of the Year Award

The Trainee of the Year Award is part of Pig World magazine’s National Pig Awards and takes place in November each year. It’s open to all British pig unit employees. Nominations are welcomed from both experienced individuals and newcomers who have completed training to develop their skills and knowledge.

Nominees must show how training is benefiting both their career and livestock performance on their unit, which should be supported by unit performance data.

This award, which also includes a cash prize, provides a great opportunity for individuals to earn recognition for the training undertaken.  

Individuals can apply themselves or can be nominated. More information about the National Pig Awards can be found on the Pig World website.