Former UK chief vet Nigel Gibbens joins scientific committee advising Brazilian poultry sector on European consumers

The Brazilian chicken trade body, ABPA, is to start working with a new scientific committee which has been set up to advise on the needs of European consumers.

The former UK chief vet Nigel Gibbens is part of the committee.

According to ABPA, the committee will hold its first meeting on 1 July 2019, to discuss its objectives and aims. The main role of the committee will be to provide scientific analysis, recommendations and opinions to the ABPA, with a focus on maintaining the standards already in place and continuing to meet the European market needs in terms of environment, food safety, animal health and welfare, and consumers’ expectations. A second follow-up meeting will be held in August 2019.

Although the scientific committee was established as part of an initiative by the ABPA, it is an independent body.

 The scientific committee consists of five industry experts:

·         Nigel Gibbens, former UK chief veterinary officer.

·         Birgitta Staaf Larsson has a strong background in animal welfare. Based in Sweden, Larsson is currently a qualified officer at the Swedish Centre for Animal Welfare, which is part of the Swedish University for Agricultural Sciences. She will be working closely with Elina Asbjer, also from the Swedish Centre for Animal Welfare, who brings a specialist knowledge on antimicrobial resistance to the committee.

·         Marc Gehlkopf from France. Gehlkopf is a qualified professional in quality and food safety. Part of his role involves working with manufacturers who work with Brazilian poultry products.

·         Antônio Mário Penz Junior from Brazil, is the fourth committee member and has a background in veterinary care and Brazilian animal welfare. Penz has a PHD in nutrition from the University of California and has upheld various research posts in education. 

Said Ricardo Santin, executive director at ABPA, said: “We are really excited that the scientific committee is kicking off its first meeting next month. It’s a key step in objectives we set out to achieve just over a year ago, and we’re delighted with the members we’ve got on board the committee. With vast experience and a desire to ensure the highest standards of animal welfare and practices in the industry, these are the best people for the job and we look forward to working with the scientific committee.”

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