Previously Julian setup and owned Hughes Consultancy and Training Ltd, an adult education FETAC accredited centre, that he sold in 2014. Julian was a founding partner in a large corporate fund based farming project in Eastern Europe and was involved in numerous corporate consultancy roles in Africa, Russia and Eastern Europe. Julian was the external examiner for agriculture in WIT College and has had research work peer reviewed and published in scientific journals in the past.
Julian has B.Sc and M.Sc Crop Protection and is BASIS and FACTS trained and is a member of the IFA horticulture committee. Married to Valerie, Julian has two children, Robyn and Billy where they live in Kells, Co Kilkenny.
Julian was a 2010 Nuffield scholar studying innovative cropping technology and practices globally with the study becoming more focused on the people who carried out the innovation and also on corporate structures.