One of the world's foremost experts on plant design, livestock behaviour and animal handling systems has been meeting some of the industry's main players and touring some of the best facilities in the south west of England and Scotland.
Professor Temple Grandin, who lectures in animal behaviour at Colorado University, in the USA, has been described as having rock-star status in the world of agriculture and meat production.
She recently completed a week of visits, which took in Jody Scheckter's Hampshire farm complex, a new multi-million agricultural centre at Junction 4 off the M5 near Bridgwater, Somerset, and the nearby Southern Counties Fresh Foods meat plant and beef and lamb farms.
After presenting a lecture at the EBLEX National Producer Conference in Bristol, she headed to Scotland on Tuesday for talks with the industry and to visit Beef Expo 2008 in Perth.
About half of the livestock processes in the USA go through plants that have adopted design principles and equipment recommended or developed by Professor Grandin.
? Professor Grandin talks to MTJ about best practice in abattoir in a special Plant Design feature in the 20 June issue.