Ian Panton is this year’s recipient of the Howie/Surgenor Cup for his major contribution to the Scottish poultry industry.

He has worked for the Scottish-based company Aviagen since 1970, latterly as its chief executive officer. He has overseen the development and introduction of breeding programmes throughout the world, leading to the company’s place as supplier of over 50% of the world’s parent stock market for commercial broiler (meat) chickens.

Mr Panton grew up in Aberdeenshire and was educated at Robert Gordon’s College and Harper Adams Agricultural College. In 1992 he moved to Alabama, USA to take up the position of president of Ross Breeders, a sister company of Aviagen, while retaining his position on the board at the headquarters in Newbridge.

In 2001, following acquisitions of additional, internationally well-known brands, he was made chief executive, a position he held until May this year when he relinquished it to become chairman of the holding company, Aviagen Holdings.

The presentation took place at The Dunblane Hydro Hotel and was attended by 270 members of the Scottish poultry industry.