Poultry farm assistant

Poultry farm assistant

A poultry farm assistant helps the poultry farm management team with daily operations.
Also known as poultry assistant, farm assistant, poultry worker, farm worker (poultry), s​​tockman or stockperson.

This profile highlights the skills and knowledge associated with the role. However, jobs will have varying responsibilities depending on level of the role and the size or type of the business.

As a poultry farm assistant, you’ll have lots of tasks to complete. This role gives you lots of hands-on experience and is a good first step into an exciting career in the industry.

There are different types of farm systems in the poultry industry. Eggs are produced in free-range, barn or laying cage systems. Birds can also be reared indoors or outdoors for meat production.  

A poultry farm assistant helps ensure the birds are kept according to high standards of health and welfare. You’ll keep them healthy and meet their needs so the farm can reach its production targets and minimise its impact on the environment. 

You’ll help the management team and report to a supervisor, such as an assistant farm manager, or farm manager. You’ll be working in a team, but you’ll also need to work independently. 

Depending on the size of the business, working hours can vary. You might need to work shifts or at weekends. 

Full-time and part-time opportunities are available.  

You may need your own transport to get to work.

As a poultry farm assistant, your responsibilities might include: 

  • General bird care including checking ​​temperature, humidity, litter quality, access to feed and water 
  • ​​​Daily checking of birds to see if they are fit and healthy  
  • Reporting any concerns to the supervisor/manager  
  • Helping r​​ear birds to the farm specifications 
  • Following company procedures to ensure good levels of ​​biosecurity 
  • Following and meeting health and safety rules 
  • Making sure personal protective equipment is kept clean and in good condition 
  • Maintaining good environmental standards 
  • Helping manage the temperature control, lighting and watering system for indoor birds 
  • Helping with egg collection, ​​grading, sorting and packing if working on a layer farm 
  • Using machinery and equipment safely 
  • ​​​Completing and keeping accurate records 

To work as a poultry farm assistant, you should:

  • Have good attention to detail 
  • Be able to follow guidance and work independently  
  • Enjoy practical, hands-on work 
  • Enjoy working on many varied tasks 
  • Be able to keep calm when working to deadlines 
  • Be keen interest in poultry and looking after birds 
  • Be reliable, with a flexible approach to work 

To be a poultry farm assistant, you do not necessarily need a formal qualification. However, you’ll need to be trained to a minimum standard set by the British Poultry Training Initiative

Your employer will provide the training, which should cover biosecurity, health and safety, using personal protective equipment and other areas of your role.  

You can also choose to study further for a better understanding of agri-food industry. Take a look at the Qualifications and Training Section. 

There are many jobs and opportunities to progress in the UK poultry industry. You can also get experience by volunteering on a farm or smallholding, a local city farm, community garden, or allotment. To find one in your area go to the Social Farms and Gardens website

Reading farming newspapers, magazines and websites will also develop your knowledge and understanding. 

As a poultry farm assistant, you’ll have competencies in many poultry farm tasks, working to high welfare standards.  

You will:  

  • Follow farm hygiene rules to reduce the risk of disease  
  • Follow farm rules for looking after birds and the environment 
  • Meet relevant health and safety standards  
  • Meet high poultry health and welfare standards 
  • Help meet high bird husbandry standards 
  • Follow guidance and plans to achieve production targets 
  • Use the appropriate technology, machinery and equipment safely  

Salaries are in the region of £17,000 to £23,000 depending on experience and location, or £9.50 to £12 per hour for casual work. 

If you decide to progress in your career, there are other opportunities available. Once you’ve gained enough experience and training, you could move up to a supervisor level, such as an assistant farm manager or team leader.   

Courses which can help you on this career path include:

Level 1 Diploma in Land-based Studies Agriculture  

Level 2 Diploma in Work-based Agriculture 


Apprenticeship Poultry Worker Level 2

TIAH Essential Skills

Our online Essential Skills modules can help you develop your skills and knowledge in a range of areas and are a great addition to your CV.

Anyone considering working as a poultry farm assistant would find our Animal Health and WelfareBiosecurity and Foundations in Farm Safety courses useful.

You can find out more about the diverse range of roles in the poultry sector by listening to Ben Eagle's Meet the Farmers podcast, episode 150.

Return to our job profiles page for more exciting roles in farming and growing.