Food Law News - UK - 2008

FSA News Item, 14 November 2008

ADMINISTRATION - Agency creates new environmental health role

The Food Standards Agency has appointed Sarah Appleby as Head of Profession: Environmental Health. The creation of this new role acknowledges the importance of environmental health work in the Agency and the value that it brings to the organisation.

Announcing the appointment, FSA Chief Executive Tim Smith said: Environmental health is very important within the Agency's overall framework. I am delighted to appoint Sarah Appleby in this new specialised role. She has a breadth of knowledge across environmental health issues and I am confident that she will raise the profile of environmental officers within the Agency while gaining the confidence of stakeholders.'

Sarah will represent environmental health officers within the FSA as their head of profession, and will also be an Agency representative for the profession in the wider enforcement community.

Sarah has a BSc in Environmental Health and has worked as an environmental health officer for Greenwich and Ealing local authorities. She has experience across a wide range of enforcement and food safety legislation and her work has included food hygiene training, the investigation of food poisoning, live animal market inspections and pest control. Sarah is also a qualified meat inspector and has worked in a slaughterhouse.

Sarah said: I worked as an environmental health officer for many years and understand the important role enforcement officers play in relation to food safety. They make a valuable contribution to the Agency and in my new role I intend to harness their expertise, particularly in policy-making.'

In 1992 Sarah joined the Department of Health on secondment to assist with the implementation of EU product specific hygiene directives into UK legislation and implementation of the Imported Food Regulations. Sarah joined the FSA when it was formed in 2000 and was involved in the investigation of a number of national food frauds and meat scams. She was appointed Secretary of the Waste Food Task Force, an independent group of experts set up by the FSA, which made recommendations on the prevention of meat scams.

In April 2003 Sarah became head of the newly created Imported Food Division, and in June 2004 successfully delivered the 'Step Change' project in improving local authority enforcement of imported food controls. She is currently Head of the Enforcement Support Division which provides support to local authorities including guidance advice and training on hygiene and food standards issues. Sarah also heads up the UK Wine Standards Enforcement Team.

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