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Meryl Ward reflects on two years at helm of AHDB Pork

2nd Apr 2017 / By Alistair Driver

Meryl Ward has spoken of her pride at the progress made during her two years as chair of AHDB Pork.

But further change is needed if the levy body is to deliver on the potential wrapped up in its three-year strategy, she told Pig World in an interview in this month's edition.

Meryl PW“The new branding has led to much greater recognition of AHDB’s work within the wider stakeholder community, but there is still much more to do," she said.

“I think the breadth and depth of activities AHDB is involved in is quite poorly understood outside the organisation. Its work as the independent, evidence-based organisation is crucial at this point of agricultural change.”

She is delighted with AHDB Pork’s new three-year strategy, which outlines various priorities and actions within AHDB’s over-arching vision across its six sectors.

She added: “The bit that I am not so happy about is the criticism levelled at AHDB Pork that it is not seen as a leader in the new collaborative working approach. I thought that was unfair and I absolutely dispute it.”  

She highlighted the need for AHDB to ensure it has the expertise available to deliver the next stage of the levy-funded marketing campaign for pork. Subject to Defra approval, the intention is for the campaign to commence this autumn.

Meryl said: “We can’t afford to be light in the promotional team. We need the best brains on it, we need to push it hard and we really need Defra to sign it off soon, so we can start in October. We are at a crunch point.”

She concluded with a plea for AHDB Pork to ensure it gets its internal culture right.  

"It has a fabulous strategy, but unless it gets the culture right, it will not deliver it to anything like its full potential and leverage the maximum out of that £66m of levy money.”

To read the article in full, click here or see the April edition of Pig World.

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