AIMS conference hears from Ukraine meat industry boss
The Association of Independent Meat Suppliers (AIMS) hosted its annual conference on Friday 21st April at Butchers’ Hall in London, where attendees heard from a panel of speakers on the pressing issues facing the British meat industry. Amongst the speakers was CEO of the Meat Industry Association of Ukraine, Mykola Babenko.
Charles Baughan, managing director of Westaway Sausages opened the afternoon’s presentations with a talk on ‘innovation within a competitive market’, sharing the evolution of the business throughout the generations and how the company has adapted to changing marketing conditions to remain competitive.
Liam Byrne, director of marketing at the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) spoke about the impact of both socioeconomic factors, such as health and sustainability, and the potential of social media in influencing consumer decision making. Byrne’s sentiments were in part echoed by the event’s mystery speaker, farmer Gareth Wynn Jones, who spoke about the power of social platforms to change the narrative surrounding meat eating and livestock farming.
Junior Johnson, director of operations at the Food Standards Agency (FSA), took the audience through his highlights and reflections of the last year in the role. Johnson acknowledged some of the hot topics of today, including the FSA’s Operation Hawk, and underlined the importance of collaboration between industry and the FSA going forward.
Following the afternoon’s panel, the conference also heard from CEO of the Meat Industry Association of Ukraine, Mykola Babenko. In his presentation, Babaneko thanked British officials for their support of Ukraine throughout the ongoing conflict, and briefly looked at the opportunities for consolidating Ukrainian product within the British market as part of New Pig Production 2025 Ukraine and CoFarming Ukraine programmes.