University Professor appointed to top food standards role

A University of Aberdeen academic has been appointed as Chief Scientific Advisor for Food Standards Scotland.

Professor Norval Strachan, who is Chair in Physics at the University, specialises in research related to foodborne illnesses such as E. coli O157, Campylobacter, Salmonella and Listeria, and has published over 100 peer-reviewed papers.

He becomes the first Chief Scientific Advisor to FSS, which was set up last year as Scotland’s food body to ensure that information and advice on food safety and standards, nutrition and labelling is independent, consistent, evidence-based and consumer-focused.

Professor Strachan will be responsible for the delivery of the principle roles for science within FSS, from commissioning and evaluating research to communicating scientific and risk advice.    

Commenting on his appointment, he said: “The University of Aberdeen is recognised as a world leader in food safety research, and I’m delighted to bring this knowledge and experience to my new role as Chief Scientific Advisor with Food Standards Scotland.

“I’m delighted to join FSS and look forward to leading on the body’s evidence-based scientific approach, which allows FSS and consumers to make informed decisions in relation to food.

Geoff Ogle, Chief Executive of FSS, added: “One of our key priorities is protecting consumers in Scotland from the risks of foodborne illness, and I am confident that Norval’s expertise, knowledge and experience will help to ensure the safety of Scotland’s food, and deliver wider scientific input in our key priority areas such as diet and nutrition.

“It’s a privilege to have someone of Norval’s calibre on board to support us in delivering a food and drink environment in Scotland that benefits, protects and is trusted by consumers.”