FDF chief executive Ian Wright gains lifetime achievement award

The chief executive of the Food and Drink Federation (FDF), Ian Wright, has gained a lifetime achievement accolade for his services to industry at the organisation’s annual awards, reports Neill Barston.

Having taken the helm at the sector trade body six years ago, he has strongly represented the interests of businesses across segments, including key players in the confectionery, snacks and bakery markets.

Wright has worked as Director of Communications for Boots and Executive Director responsible for global reputation at Diageo before joining the FDF in 2015. As the organisation noted, under his leadership, it has ‘been transformed,’ increasing membership from 164 to over 800 companies, and with it, the reputation and influence of food and drink manufacturing.

The chief executive, who is due to step down at the end of this year, was among a number of other key award winners at the event last night, held at the The Royal Lancaster in London, brought together a total of over 500 guests to celebrate the efforts of the UK food and drink industry over the last year.

Furthermore, the Rising Star award went to Beulah Davies, of Premier Foods, which operates a number of confectionery and snacks brands. She had joined the business in  2017 on the Commercial Graduate Scheme, and enjoyed a swift rise. The company noted she had impressed from day one with her drive, tenacity and commitment. Her multi-functional experience across field sales, supply chain, marketing and more recently national accounts, has given her invaluable insight across the business.

Among the other winners on the night were KP Snacks, acclaimed for its HR ways of working with four great initiatives that have delivered significant benefits to colleagues. By involving colleagues in the design of these initiatives, as well as the implementation, it has meant the uptake by KP employees has been high.

Speaking on the many accolades dispensed on the evening, Ian Wright CBE, Chief Executive, Food and Drink Federation, offered his congratulations: “Yet again, all of the entries for the FDF Awards showcased the excellence of the people, businesses, initiatives and innovation which exists right across our sector. Every single individual and company nominated should be extremely proud of the contribution they make towards to the food and drink industry.

“Following a tough few years, the industry continues to go from strength-to-strength. I am immensely proud of the way every person across the food and drink supply chain has responded to the challenges of Covid, our EU Exit and – now – the extremely tight labour market.”

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