New Chair and Vice Chair for SAOS

Mark Clark SAOS Chairman

Mark Clark SAOS Chairman

Following our AGM, Mark Clark was appointed as the new Chairman of SAOS, succeeding George Lawrie. Our new Vice Chairman is John Hutcheson.

Mark, Managing Director of Grampian Growers, brings strong business acumen to the role, with Grampian Growers having developed and expanded their range of varieties of seed potatoes, as well as daffodil bulbs and flowers, to explore new export markets in many different areas of the world, each with its own set of challenges.

John is a Director of Tay Forth Machinery Ring, having been a member since the ring was established in 1989. He is also a Director of GrainCo Scotland and, as member of their OatCo producer group, works closely and successfully with Quaker PepsiCo, sharing the benefits resulting from a growing market for oat products.

We are delighted that Mark has accepted the role of Chairman and we look forward to working more closely with him. Mark commented: “This is a very challenging, but also exciting time to lead SAOS. The challenges to agriculture continue to increase rather than dissipate, and farm profitability is under more and more pressure, but I believe that the structure of SAOS, the strong leadership and very committed staff will result in continued success in the future. I firmly believe that greater co-operation within the industry is one of the few answers to many of the problems we face and SAOS is well-placed to facilitate the anticipated growth of the co-op sector.”

John Hutcheson SAOS Vice Chairman

John Hutcheson SAOS Vice Chairman

John agreed, adding: “SAOS continues to adapt and develop the services that our co-op members require and ensure that the correct resource is in place to do this. Rural businesses need to communicate and collaborate more with each other; I think there is further potential for Rings to work with each other in order to lower input costs and extend the range of services available. I’d also like to see more producer-controlled marketing groups for primary produce, with the aim of creating greater price leverage in the marketplace and quality assurance branding that targets specific customer requirements.”

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