We’re back with another interview as part of our ‘Meat’ the Speakers segment. Today on the Meatup blog, we speak to Norman Bagley, head of policy at the Association of Independent Meat Suppliers (AIMS).

So, if you’re interested in finding out more about Norman’s role within the industry, or you just want to know what his favourite type of meat is…keep reading! 

Q. How did you become involved with the meat industry and how did you come to be in your current position?

A. I was an auctioneer until 2000 when I was asked to serve on Maclean Review on inspection charges. The importance of SMEs [small and medium-sized enterprises] was revealed in that review. As a result I set up AIMS on 21st February 2001 on the night before FMD [food-and-mouth disease]. Initially it was 50 members in red meat abattoirs. This then expanded to 160 abattoirs in red and white meat sectors plus 100 cutting and further processing plants and 40 associate members. I’ve been head of AIMS since.

Q. What is the best thing about working in the meat industry?

A. The people.

Q. What is the hardest part about your job?

A. Making regulatory authorities see practical sense.

Q. In three words, can you describe yourself?

A. Focused, determined and relentless.

Q. What do you make of the state of the UK meat sector and how do you currently see Brexit impacting the industry?

A. The independent sector is doing well, but the major retailer serving sector is extremely competitive. Brexit is still unfolding but I’m confident trading issues will be resolved.

Q. What advice do you have for meat professionals as they attempt to ride through the rough seas of Brexit ahead?

A. Seas may or may not be rough. Make sure your representatives are up to speed.

Q. What advice can you give younger generations who may be interested in entering the meat industry?

A. Get plenty of practical experience as well as qualifications.

Q. If you had to only eat one type of meat for the rest of your life, what would you choose and why?

A. Rib eye steak well matured. It’s healthy and tasty.

Q. Can you give us a rough outline of what visitors can expect to hear from you at Meatup?

A. Common sense and some views others might not wish expressed.

Q. Why should visitors to Meatup go to your seminar?

A. To have some fun hopefully and to come away better informed on current issues.

Tune into the blog each Monday, where we’ll give you even more updates and more info on the upcoming meat event.