Dr David Dobbin CBE was elected Chairman of Dairy UK today at the organisation's Annual General Meeting. Dr Dobbin is Chief Executive of United Dairy Farmers, a leading UK dairy co-operative.
Dr Dobbin said: "I am acutely aware that I am taking on the Chair of Dairy UK at a time when our industry faces significant challenges along the supply chain for farmers and processors alike. While we look to the Government and EU Commission to support the dairy sector in the current global market crisis, we must look first and foremost to what we can do ourselves.
"We must continue to be market rather than production led, continue to build our international competitiveness and continue to create added value through product and process innovation. There are clearly opportunities to promote British dairy produce and increase our market share in our home market, as well as grow exports. Dairy UK has an important role to play in all of this.
"Driving demand for dairy products means ensuring Government agencies and consumers at home and abroad recognise our industry's capability and commitment to produce food products that are safe, nutritious and sustainable. These are goals that Dairy UK and its subsidiaries are already working hard to achieve and intend to further enhance going forward.
"I look forward to working with my Board colleagues and the Dairy UK executive to help to drive the dairy agenda forward. I believe the UK dairy industry can hold its own against the very best, but we need Government to help us create an environment where we can successfully compete and generate viable and sustainable returns for farmers and processors."
Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said: "Dairy UK is delighted to have such a formidable advocate of the dairy industry's activities and products as David Dobbin at its helm. The Board of Dairy UK and the executive team are also very grateful to Billy Keane for his Chairmanship, during which he led the organisation forward with drive and commitment."
Dr Bryans also welcomed the election of Paul Vernon from Glanbia Cheese and Peter Giørtz-Carlsen from Arla Foods as Vice-Chairs of Dairy UK. "Mr Vernon and Mr Giørtz-Carlsen bring with them a wealth of expertise and insights on the dairy industry. I look forward to working with such a strong and experienced leadership team to drive the industry forward and seize the opportunities that lie ahead."