Membership of the UK-wide Food Hygiene Ratings Steering Group

Last updated:
22 September 2015

Chair

Steven Esom joined Langholm Capital, a consumer sector focused Private Equity Fund, in July 2009. His background is in the food industry, latterly at Marks & Spencer which he joined in June 2007 as Food Director, being made Executive Director in March 2008 and before that as Managing Director of Waitrose since 2003, having joined the Partnership as Waitrose’s Director of Buying in 1996. He was also a Non Executive Director of Ocado. Until 2003, Steven spent most of his career at Sainsbury’s, including a period with its US subsidiary Shaws, based in Boston. He became a Non Executive Director of Carphone Warehouse in September 2005. Currently he is a Non-executive Director of Cranswick plc and Tyrrells Potato Chips and is Chairman of Bart Spices. Steven joined the Board of BRC Trading in April 2011.

Food Standards Agency representative

David Hart has been with the FSA since it was formed in 2000 and is currently Head of the Local Authority Enforcement Policy Unit of the Local Delivery Division. Previously, he worked in the Department of Health, including a range of food related roles, and before that worked on a number of income support policy areas in the former Department of Health and Social Security.

Consumer representatives

Derek Bodey joined the Steering Group in January 2012. He has recently retired as a Principal of a Sixth Form College. Mr Bodey has been a Board Member of the Association of Colleges and is currently a Council Member of the Association of School and College Leaders. His career within education has given him wide experience of committee work, risk assessment and decision making processes. Mr Bodey has for many years had an interest in and commitment to issues of Fairtrade and Trade Justice. Among his charitable interests, he is treasurer of his local Christian Aid committee. Mr Bodey is also a member of the Committee on Toxicity and the FSA’s Consumer Advisory Panel.

Sharon Grant is a consultant specialising in equalities issues and served on the FSA’s Advisory Committee on Consumer Engagement for the past four years. She has served as Chair of London TravelWatch, the transport users' watchdog for London, and as Chair of the former Commission for Patient and Public Involvement in Health from 2003 to 2008, setting up its 400 plus local forums across England. She also chairs a Citizens Advice Bureau, and is a trustee of a number of charities, with a particular interest in race equality and health. In the past she was a university lecturer in Social Policy and worked as an Parliamentary aide for 13 years. She has also been a local councillor and campaigner on health and civil rights issues.

Industry representatives

Lucy Aldrich-Smith is Policy Manager at the British Hospitality Association (BHA), which represents over 40,000 hotels, serviced apartments, clubs, restaurants, food service, attractions and leisure companies. Lucy is responsible for all UK and European food and hospitality issues, leading the BHA member food groups, as well as supporting members with practical regulatory advice and overseeing campaigns.

Andrew Opie is director of food policy at the British Retail Consortium (BRC), the trade association for retailers, whose members account for 80% of grocery sales in the UK. Andrew covers all food policy issues in the UK and Europe, from supplier relationships to food labelling and composition. He represents retailers at stakeholder meetings, recently covering issues such as the Food Matters Report, developing a food vision with Defra and working with the Scottish Government on its food strategy.

Stephen Livens joined the BBPA in 2010 and currently works within the BBPA Policy Team as a Policy Manager responsible for the activities of the Association involved in representing the interests of the members in many scientific and technical issues that affect the industry today, including asset management and supply chain movements, food and raw material quality and safety, product assurance and labelling.

Local authority representatives

Gwyneth Rogers is the Senior Policy Advisor on regulation within the LGA Stronger and Safer Communities Programme. Her role focuses on working with local politicians and officers to effectively influence the development of policy across regulatory matters, identifying good practice and providing practical support for environmental health and trading standards services. Before undertaking this specific role, Gwyneth worked for LG Regulation / LACORS as both a Team Leader and a Policy Officer. As a Team Leader, Gwyneth worked on policy relating to food and animal health, which included responsibility for the Food Vision website. Gwyneth also led on a number of corporate projects, including implementation of the Services Directive and risk assessment. Gwyneth previously worked in the private sector as a project manager for major public sector clients, including local authorities.

Jenny Morris leads on food policy issues at the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, the professional, awarding and campaigning body at the forefront of environmental and public health and safety in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Jenny is a member of the Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food and is currently the secretary to the European Food Law Enforcement Practitioners Forum (FLEP).

Sheila Davison is a chartered environmental health practitioner with over 20 years of environmental health experience. She is currently an environmental health manager for Ashford Borough Council, having previously worked for the London Borough of Greenwich and the London Borough of Lewisham. Sheila is an advisor to the Local Authorities Coordinators of Regulatory Services (LACORS) and served for a number of years on the LACORS Food Policy Forum.

Wales and Northern Ireland

Neil Underwood is currently manager of the Food Safety Section at Wrexham Council and has been with the Council since 1990 (having previously worked for North East Derbyshire and Alyn and Deeside District Councils). He has been a member of the Welsh Food Safety Management Steering Group since its inception in 2005, and in 2006 helped develop an independent six-tier food hygiene star rating scheme for Wrexham County Borough Council.

Fiona McClements currently works in Dungannon and South Tyrone Borough Council in Northern Ireland as the Deputy Director of Environmental Health. She graduated from the University of Ulster with a BSc and an MSc in Environmental Health. Fiona represents the Northern Ireland Chief Environmental Health Officers Group on the Steering Group.

Food Standards Agency Secretariat

Catriona Stewart – Food Standards Agency
Claire Voller – Food Standards Agency