Life on the Farm: Interview with Buck Wiley

Good Morning! It finally stopped raining! The pastures are well saturated, the ducks are swimming, we’ve had a couple of really exciting visitors on the farm and it’s almost the weekend! What a great day! You’re probably thinking it can’t get much better than this, but you’re wrong! I conducted another interview this week, with a really important and special guy at the farm. Without further ado, meet Buck…

Justin “Buck” Wiley began working at White Oak Pastures in July of 2009. He was hired as a butcher and worked hard to prove himself until he was promoted to Beef Plant Manager. Buck takes pride in his work and in making our customers happy. He manages 38 employees and 35 head of cattle each day in the Red Meat Abattoir. He arrives at the plant early in the morning and is typically one of the last people to leave. He carries a lot of responsibility, but also has the pleasure of working with some of his best friends every day. He’s a great guy, with a huge heart and a constant smile on his face…and yes, ladies – he’s single! We couldn’t be happier to have him as part of our work family!

1. What’s your favorite part of working at the farm? THERE’S NEVER A DULL MOMENT. THERE’S ALWAYS A NEW ADVENTURE GOING ON FOR A MANAGER TO TACKLE EVERYDAY. ALL OF US LOVE NEW CHALLENGES AND ADVENTURES.

2. Do you plan to retire as a WOP cowboy? YES! I’LL BE HERE UNTIL THE COWS COME HOME.

3. It’s a Friday night in Bluffton, Georgia…where can we find you? IN THE BEEF PLANT UNTIL AROUND 7PM FINISHING UP A LONG WEEK. THEN ON DOWN TO THE PAVILION FOR A NICE DINNER AND A COLD BEER TO START PLANNING OUT THE NEXT WEEK.

4. What’s your favorite Will Harris quote? “YOU TAKE CARE OF THE LAND AND ANIMALS, AND THEY WILL TAKE CARE OF YOU.”

5. You began your career here as a butcher. What motivated you to work your way up to Beef Plant Manager? I WAS SO IMPRESSED WITH EVERYTHING GOING ON AT THE TIME, WHICH WAS 3 YEARS AGO. I HAD NO IDEA WE WERE GOING TO BE ALL THAT WE ARE TODAY, BUT I KNEW I WANTED TO BE A PART OF THE EVERYDAY PROCESSES OF WOP AND TO NOT ONLY CUT MEAT.

6. What’s the funniest thing you’ve witnessed at the farm? THE DAY WE TRIED TO COORDINATE A DANCE IN THE CUTTING ROOM CALLED “HARLEM SHAKE.”

7. What’s your favorite hobby, outside of work? HUNTING, SPORTS AND OUTDOORS

8. If you weren’t at WOP, where would you hope to be employed? I NEVER WANT TO FIND ANYWHERE ELSE TO BE EMPLOYED.

9. WOP is a unique place to live, work and play. What do you think makes it most unique? ALL THE CONTINUING CHALLENGES THAT GO ALONG WITH HAVING SO MANY DEPARTMENTS WITHIN THE COMPANY, AND BEING ABLE TO HELP WITH THE LIVESTOCK PRODUCTION OF WOP.

10. What’s the biggest challenge you face on a daily basis in the beef plant? KEEPING UP WITH CONSUMER DEMAND AND THEIR EVER-CHANGING SPECS. WE SELL TO GROCERY STORES, CHEFS AND INDIVIDUAL CONSUMERS, WHICH ALL HAVE MANY DIFFERENT SPECS. IT’S A CHALLENGE EVERY DAY.

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