Kate Rowell will become chair when Jim McLaren steps down on October 1
Borders farmer Kate Rowell has been appointed by Scottish ministers as the new chair of Quality Meat Scotland (QMS).
Jim McLaren will step down on October 1 after almost 8 years in charge and there had been concerns from the industry about delays in appointing his successor before he stands down.
Mrs Rowell has been a member of the QMS board since April 2015 and is a fifth generation farmer running 75 suckler cows and around 800 sheep near Peebles.
Mrs Rowell, who has been a member of the QMS board since April 2015, will take over the role on October 1st when current chair Jim McLaren steps down after almost eight years at the helm.
A qualified vet, Mrs Rowell worked in a mixed practice in the North of England for eight years before she returned home to take over the reins of the family business.
The Rowells run 75 suckler cows and around 800 sheep on the farm which was previously a QMS monitor farm.
Mrs Rowell is an Honorary President of Peebles Agricultural Society and took part in the Scottish Enterprise Rural Leadership Programme in 2015/16, attending the 2018 Oxford Farming conference as an Emerging Leader.
She is also actively involved in supporting the work of the Royal Highland Education Trust.
“I feel privileged to have this opportunity to play such a pivotal role in the Scottish red meat industry. I am very much looking forward to getting out and about in the coming weeks and months to hear more from people working in all parts of the red meat industry,” she said.
Jim McLaren, current chair of QMS, said she brought a ‘wealth of experience’ both as a farmer and a vet.
“Kate brings a wealth of experience to the roll of chair, both as a farmer and a vet. Her passion for farming is shared by her enthusiasm for the wider industry and inspiring and educating people about farming and where their food comes from.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my tenure in the role of QMS chair which has given me an opportunity to see first hand the superb range of activities delivered by what is a very small team of staff at QMS.
“I have also been fortunate to have been supported by very strong board members during my period in post and I look forward to continuing to support the valuable work of QMS as a levypayer after I step down.”