New Seafish Chair Announced For UK Seafood Industry

A new Chair has been appointed to the organisation that promotes the work of the UK’s seafood industry.

Brian Young will now officially take the position at the Sea Fish Industry Authority (Seafish) with a three-year appointment. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role as he has been acting Chair of Seafish since January 2016, stepping up from his deputy Chair position. He was also previously Chair of Seafish’s Importers and Processors Panel.

Seafish is an industry-levy funded body which carries out a wide range of activities that advocate and support all sections of the fishing industry, from fishermen and processors through to importers, retailers and food service providers.

This is a Ministerial appointment supported by the four fisheries administrations, who jointly sponsor Seafish.

Brian Young, Chair of the Seafish, said:

I am delighted to be appointed Chair of Seafish at such a pivotal time for our industry. The next three years will provide many new opportunities and challenges and Seafish will work hard to help and support our industry to be profitable, sustainable and socially responsible.

It is a great privilege to be able to carry on working with the Seafish Board, the executive team, the Devolved Administrations and the incredibly diverse range of people who serve our industry with such great passion, commitment and expertise.

I am very much looking forward to the challenge.

The recruitment was carried out in accordance with the Ministerial Code of Practice for Appointments to Public Bodies. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, there is a requirement for the political activities of appointees to be made public. Brian Young has not declared any significant activity.

Biographical details:

Brian was Chief Executive of the British Frozen Food Federation until his retirement in March 2017. His career has spanned 35 years in the food business sector, including roles at RHM Foods, Sara Lee, Tryton Foods and Sundora Foods.

Brian is a qualified chartered management accountant. He is currently Chair of the Beverley Building Society and a non-executive director of Ripon Select Foods Limited. He is also a trustee of Thera Trust, a charity that has been supporting people with a learning disability since 1998.

Successful Workshop On Allergen Detection In Spices

A joint Defra, FSA, FSS and Government Chemist workshop was held at LGC on 28 February 2018. The event focused on the detection of allergens in spices and herbs using a multi-discipline approach. The workshop was attended by over 20 delegates from Public Analyst laboratories, industry and regulating bodies.

The event was organised by the Government Chemist team as part of a cross government (BEIS, FSA, FSS and Defra) knowledge transfer project that will deliver knowledge from government programmes to stakeholders to help enforce current regulations and prevent future disputes. By pooling funds from each of the four government departments, knowledge transfer events can be planned and coordinated according to priorities received directly from the stakeholder community delivering greater impact.

The workshop was opened with a talk by Dr Chun-Han Chan from the FSA’s Allergen team and followed by Greg Corbishley from Barts Spices, who gave the industry perspective into the challenges posed for manufactures by cross contamination. There were also three sessions covering the complementary techniques developed in response to the cumin and paprika cases in 2015. Malvinder Singh (LGC) talked about the immunoassay tests which initially detected allergenic contamination (initially believed to be almond) in cumin and the subsequent preparation of reference materials needed for further investigation. Chistopher Hopley (LGC) gave an overview of mass spectrometry and expanded on methods developed for the detection of close species. Timothy Wilkes (LGC) talked about the real-time PCR and melting curve approaches used for these cases. These sessions provided practical information required to enable participants to carry out or commission similar analytical tests . Michael Walker, from the GC team, provided a final overview on result interpretation and reporting on allergen cases.