Julie: Fill Role of Animal Advocate

posted on Thursday, October 6, 2022

Julie holding a piglet

“We are the only voice these animals have, and I take that very seriously,” said Julie Hase, head of the farrowing department at Erikson sow farm. “It is important that we check on them and give them what they need. It isn’t something that is a choice for me. I have to do it for them, and I know my teammates feel the same way.”

Julie has been an Iowa Select Farms employee for 11 years, and it’s no secret that she cares deeply for every pig that crosses her path. She is a shining example of our commitment to providing respectful and humane treatment to every animal at every stage of life.

“After a day of just go, go, go, the best feeling in the world is walking into a calm, quiet room full of happy sows and their babies,” explained Julie.

The farrowing department is all about welcoming a new life into the world, and Julie’s team can regularly be found helping sows—or as Julie likes to call them, “her girls”—deliver litters of piglets. However, as exciting as this farm area can be, the caretakers must pay close attention to each sow and piglet. Teams like Julie’s ensure the moms and babies are happy, healthy and safe before and after each delivery.

These expectations are maintained throughout the company and are part of Iowa Select Farms’ dedication to high-quality animal care. We take great pride in protecting our pigs’ health by providing them with the proper air, feed and water daily. This expectation is maintained by conducting daily observations of each animal to ensure their needs are met. For experienced caretakers like Julie, providing top-notch animal care has become a habit.

“At this point, my day is just reflex,” she explained. “I arrive early, make a schedule, go to wean, work with the day one lead, walk rooms, count wean projections and then jump in to help wherever is needed. We have a sense of family here. Truly, we are a work family.”

Julie discovered her love for agriculture while working part-time on a family farm.

Eventually, she heard about a full-time opportunity to work with pigs at Iowa Select Farms and knew it was time to take her love of the industry a step further. Her passion for animals and commitment to production well-being has made Julie a leader in animal care on her farm.

“It's been awesome to see Julie grow into her role over the years as farrowing manager,” said Mary Kraft, Julie’s supervisor and the manager of Erickson sow farm. “Her excellent work ethic, attitude and attention to detail results in her holding her crew to those high standards. She genuinely loves the animals she works with. Our team and the animals are fortunate to have Julie!”

Thanks to caretakers like Julie, we can provide high-quality production well-being standards to each pig at Iowa Select Farms. Our employees go above and beyond to provide the best animal care for every pig every day.