New CRV sales consultant brings extensive dairy farming and AI experience to the job

Peter Guyton

“Because I’ve been in farming most of my life, I can’t go onto a farm and simply sell a product. I’m not wired that way. When I’m talking with a farmer about genetic improvement, all I want to do is help make their life better.”

That’s the philosophy of new CRV sales consultant for the Central Plateau, Peter Guyton. His job is to help Taupo and Reporoa dairy farmers breed better cows faster. What makes Peter good at his job is his hands on farming and AI experience.

Peter is a farmer first and foremost. Born and bred on a dairy farm in Reporoa, Peter was sharemilking by 26 before moving into contract milking. From the outset, Peter was fascinated by the science of breeding, and even during those busy days, his passion for it stretched beyond the boundaries of his own farm.

“For the sake of my own herd, I trained to become an AI technician. That made a big difference to my production levels, but I wasn’t content to develop just my own herd. That’s when I started helping other farmers in my area.

“After a morning milking, I’d do an AI run and visit up to 8 herds to help them with their AI. I would get through 130 to 160 cows before lunch. Farming can be quite a solitary job, so I thoroughly enjoyed building a rapport with other farmers and helping them out with their breeding.”

Eventually, Peter decided it was time for a change of career. Given his experience in breeding and his hands-on farming experience, Peter easily transitioned into the role of fulltime AI technician for CRV. It was great fit, and for 18 years he thrived on helping other farmers improve the genetic performance of their animals.

After years working as an AI technician, CRV Peter took an opportunity to become a sales consultant. By Peter’s own admission, selling, in the traditional sense, isn’t in his nature.

“Salespeople have a reputation for pushing product. That’s not the CRV way and I’m too interested in what a farmer is trying to do to force anything on them that doesn’t help them achieve their goals."

“From my time as an AI technician, I’ve built great relationships with the farmers in the Rotorua region; I know and respect them; they know and trust me. That’s why I listen hard to what they’re trying to achieve rather than crowbar my agenda into their breeding plan.”

With respect to the AI season, most of Peter’s work has been done. The catalogues came out in March, farmers have chosen their bulls for October mating, and cows are now calving. For farmers, the next eight weeks will be busy.

What does a breeding sales consultant do during this time? Peter has clear objectives.

“For me, it’s about letting farmers know I’m still here, still available if they need me. I’ll call round to see my customers, but I won’t stay long: they’re too busy for that. We’ll have a quick chat and I’ll leave them a bag of goodies. If the opportunity allows, I’ll also take a look and see how the calves are shaping up.

“At the end of the day, it’s all about relationships. And my job at CRV is to make sure my farmers are happy and doing well.”