Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation chief executive to join food standards agency

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Food Standards Scotland has announced the appointment of Julie Hesketh-Laird as Strategy Director.

In a statement, Food Standards Scotland (FSS) writes that Hesketh-Laird is joining the organisation from her previous position as Chief Executive of the Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation, on a two-year fixed-term appointment.

FSS is a non-ministerial office, a part of the Scottish Administration alongside, but separate from, the Scottish Government. Its remit is food consumer protection, which enforces and monitor Scottish and EU food and feed regulations.

Hesketh-Laird will take up her new role on Tuesday 3 November.

Laird announced her decision to leave the organisation in June after two years in the SSPO.

FSS Chief Executive Officer Geoff Ogle said: “I am absolutely delighted that Julie is joining us at a time of immense change and challenge. She brings a wealth of trade body experience and a different and valuable perspective as we adapt to new trading requirements and the subsequent regulatory assurance required for any trade deals.

“Her experience of working in the food and drink sector will be invaluable in supporting the development of our regulatory strategy and she brings a wealth of experience to our senior team through her previous roles operating at Deputy CEO and CEO level.”

Julie Hesketh-Laird said that she was excited to be joining Food Standards Scotland – “a well-respected regulator”.

“Never have the challenges of maintaining food standards been in sharper focus. I am looking forward to using my experience of the sector to help FSS continue to develop effective policies for a successful food and drink industry and ensure consumer protection,” she added.