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Obituary: Jim Hunnable 1947-2021

Jim Hunnable

Tributes have been paid to poultry industry veteran Jim Hunnable, who has passed away suddenly.

The following is an edited version of an obituary written by Hubbard.

Jim Hunnable was born in May 1947 in Braintree, Essex.

He began in poultry production aged 15, in 1962, as a trainee at Cobb in the UK.

He worked his way up from being a broiler breeder fieldsman to area
service manager, technical service manager and general manager to MD of Cobb Breeding Company Ltd.

After the closure of Cobb’s European operation in 2001, Jim was
appointed as a non-executive director at Poultry First and Q-International and remained a non-executive director with LA Systems.

In 2003 he joined Hubbard to support the firm to further develop their business in the UK, Ireland and overseas markets like South Africa, Zimbabwe, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.

Jim served as a member of several committees in the UK, including EPIC, and played an active role in the sponsorship of the Nuffield Scholarship.

He had an extensive network in the UK, and the rest of the world, through which Jim was able to bring people together and help them in their business.

In addition to the poultry industry, Jim had another great passion.

He was very proud of his small collection of vintage cars and loved going to car rallies all over the country.


In 2006, Positive Action Publications and VIV Europe presented Jim with the “European Poultry Breeder of the Year” award, acknowledging over 40 years of experience and in-depth knowledge of the international poultry industry through his roles in the international breeding business.

In 2017, the UK Poultry Industry awarded Jim with the well-deserved
“BPC/ForFarmers Poultry Person of the Year” award.

A few months before he received this award, Jim sadly lost his lovely wife Ruth very unexpectedly.

She was his best friend who fully supported him all his (working) life through both good and bad times. He missed her very much every day.

On Friday, October 22, Jim passed away completely unexpectedly at his home in Braintree.

Hubbard said: “Jim has been a mentor to many people who currently are in key positions in the industry and has motivated a lot of young people to join the business.

“He has always been a highly respected person who never gave up, and even after nearly 60 years of service to the broiler industry, Jim was still enormously committed to the poultry industry in the UK and Ireland and other countries abroad.

“He will be remembered as a dear friend by all who have come across Jim.

“We send our condolences to his daughters Suzie and Victoria, his son Stuart and their families, including his grandchildren and to the rest of his family.

“We hope the respect and affection many people had for Jim will give them support for their huge loss. Jim really was a great family man and very proud of them all.

“May he rest in peace and finally be able to raise a glass of white wine again with his beloved Ruth.”