Keith Fisher retires from AHDB
Published:  15 April, 2016

AHDB master butcher advisor Keith Fisher has retired from the levy board after dedicating over 40 years to the meat industry. 

Keith is a fourth generation butcher and one of only 21 others in the country to hold the title of Institute of Meat Accredited Master Butcher (and was the second butcher to be awarded the prestigious title). He, has devoted his life and career to the development and excellence of the British meat industry.

His work has spanned all sectors of the industry, from the buying of live animals from auction markets and farms, to the cutting and processing of carcases for fresh cuts and products.

Keith’s family has been in the trade for over a century and he was trained at London’s Smithfield College and Market, where meat has been sold since the 10th century. Since 1974, when he joined what was then The Meat and Livestock Commission, he has been responsible for developing and popularising many cuts consumers would recognise on menus and on shelf today, including very popular and value adding dishes such as pork spare ribs

Keith’s work in the industry has stretched beyond AHDB, holding key positions as the chief executive at the Institute of Meat, a position he will continue to hold, and a liveryman and court member of the Worshipful Company of Butchers. He has also played integral roles in creating, running and judging global competitions regarding butchery skills, displays and product development.

He said: “I contemplated retirement a few years ago, but I just love what I do so much, it just kind of passed me by. I’m proud to have worked in an industry – for so long – where passion, perfectionism and progression are at the forefront of what we do. I don’t think I could ever hang up the “blue coat and hat” forever, but its time I stepped back and let the next generation take the helm to help move the industry forward. I’m very proud of what I’ve achieved, and look forward to seeing which cuts and products will be presiding in butcher’s counters in the years to come.”

On his decision to retire, Meryl Ward, AHDB Pork, chairman, said: “In Keith we are undoubtedly losing a wealth of experience and knowledge. He has been a prominent figure within the meat industry for decades and we know we’ve been lucky to have his expertise at our finger tips all this time. He will be leaving a very big pair of wellies to fill, but we wish Keith and his wife Mary the very best for his retirement.”