Interfood boss appointed as BDCI festival chairman

The Butchers’ and Drovers’ Charitable Institution (BDCI) has announced that Interfood’s James Sydenham will take over as festival chairman.

Sydenham, who is co-founder and joint managing director at the food processing equipment and ingredients company, will succeed Beatrice Blake, general manager of Bord Bia, in the role.

Commenting on his appointment, he said: “I am honoured to have been offered the opportunity to take on this incredibly prestigious role and I am excited by the challenges that lie ahead. In my view, by far the biggest challenge is to make the work of the charity – and what it represents – much more visible within our industry.

“I know that Beatrice also saw this as a priority, and it is thanks to her that we now have a brand new website in place which has made it easier for people to apply for assistance. I plan to build on this platform and hope to introduce some new initiatives to encourage those working in the meat industry to take a more active role in promoting the work of the charity to colleagues past and present, who may be eligible to apply for a grant.”

He added: “Of course fundraising also remains a priority and we will continue with the time-honoured Annual Festival Dinner as the highlight of the calendar year, as well as a number of other fundraising events prior to that. I hope to see as many people as possible come along to these to show their support.”

Fundraising events lined up for the year so far include a Golf Day, which will take place at Surrey Downs Golf Course on Wednesday 27 June and a Go-Carting ‘Endurance Challenge’ to be held at Daytona, Milton Keynes on Friday 20 July. This year’s Festival Dinner will be held once again at the Grosvenor House Hotel on Friday 28th September. To register for the Golf Day contact Alan Bird alan@twocountiesfoods.co.uk or for the Go-Cart Endurance Challenge contact Danielle Hewett dhewett@interfoodtechnology.com.

The BDCI provides financial support for anyone in the UK who has been connected in any way with the meat trade, as well as their widows/widowers or dependents. For more information see www.bdci.uk.com.