Taking Dairy Global
Joe Towers of Lune Valley Dairy Farm discovered new market opportunities following his engagement with the University’s China Catalyst Programme.
Since joining the community of EIRs in 2014, Joe has governed significant growth within his business - a task which has helped him to improve his own personal development.
Joe believes that many of his business' recent accomplishments can be traced back to the University and his development as an EIR.
Not only has he been able to build strong and lasting relationships with other entrepreneurs by attending the Lancashire Forum network and business programme, Joe has also seen his business diversify as he ventures into new territory supported by Lancaster University’s China Catalyst Programme.
Joe first looked at exporting milk to China as a way to benefit from a growing demand for foreign dairy products. However, the changing economic climate meant a rethink of this strategy was required and as demand slowed so did Joe's enthusiasm about exporting to the country.
Still, this didn't stop Joe's view that dairy production is directly affected by foreign policy. Joe said, “China has influenced the global dairy industry so much that a dairy farmer in the UK is waking up and the biggest decision that is going to affect his business is what China decides to do with their interest rate.”
Reluctant to withdraw from this Chinese market, Joe decided to help develop solutions that could boost consumers’ confidence in Chinese dairy products. He now works with an American data company on technological solutions that would improve the traceability of dairy products. He also collaborates with four students from the China Catalyst Programme who are helping him to develop this technology from China. Joe hopes to see the products become marketable in both China and the UK in the near future.