AHDB Dairy has appointed three new members to its sector board. Joe Towers, Liz Haines and Ian Harvey took up their roles on 1 April for a three-year period.
They replace Janette Prince, Tim Gue and David Cotton, who left the board in March having completed their terms of office.
Following a degree in Agri-food Marketing at Harper Adams University, Joe joined the family milk processing business and they now sell bespoke milk to London coffee shops. He sits on the BBC Rural Affairs Committee and is an Honorary Teaching Fellow (Entrepreneur in Residence) at Lancaster University Management School. He was also awarded a Nuffield scholarship in 2018 to investigate reducing methane emissions in cattle, sponsored by McDonalds Restaurants.
Joe said: “I find the dairy industry endlessly fascinating from end to end and I think in the modern age, with the data and skills AHDB has access to, it is in a position to play a pivotal role to ensure dairy farmers have the opportunity to drive their competitiveness on the world stage.”
Liz milks 330 spring calving cows with her husband in a contract farming arrangement at the Hardwick Estate in North Shropshire. Liz is a new entrant to dairy farming, having left her previous career in Marketing to farm full time in 2013.
On her appointment, Liz said: “I’m looking forward to bringing my perspective as a young female farmer, a new entrant and a contract farmer to the AHDB Dairy Board.”
Ian manages a family-run enterprise which milks a herd of 180 Holstein Friesians and Ayrshires on 162 hectares near Launceston, Cornwall. He started his career as a civil servant working for the Inland Revenue and is currently Finance Director at Dairy Crest Direct. He is an active member of various farming groups, with appointments including Farmer Member of the NFU National Dairy Board and NFU Red Tractor Dairy Board Representative.
Ian said: “One of my aims during my appointment would be to encourage more farmers, especially small herds, to use the AHDB resources that they have paid for.”
The AHDB Dairy Board has 11 members, including chairman Gwyn Jones. As well as setting the strategy for dairy, it approves annual budgets and activity plans. The boards are made up of farmers and processors, providing an important level of direct accountability for AHDB.