Food Standards Agency appoints ex-Arla boss as chief executive

The Food Standards Agency has appointed Tim Smith, former chief executive of Arla Foods UK, as its new chief executive after more than 18 months of the post being vacant.

Taking over the £200,000 role, Mr Smith will be responsible for the day-to-day running of the agency and will take up the position in March 2008. He will replace acting chief executive, John Harwood and is “looking forward to the challenge” the new role will pose.

“Now, more than ever, food is an issue of national importance and there is no doubt we have tough challenges ahead of us, especially in the fight against obesity.”

Mr Smith, who graduated from Leeds University with a degree in microbiology and zoology, has spent his entire career in the food industry, holding senior positions at Northern Foods, Sara Lee Corporation and Express Dairies.

Chairwoman of the FSA, Dame Deirdre Hutton, welcomed the appointment. “It’s tremendous news that Tim is joining us. A scientist by background, he has close links to both the retail and agricultural sectors and, of course, a great track record in running a major UK food business.”

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