George Davey wins AIFST award

Saturday, 22 October, 2005

Food Authority director-general, George Davey has been awarded the 2005 Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology (AIFST) Award of Merit for his outstanding contribution to the food sector spanning more than 30 years.

The award, the Institute's highest, acknowledges significant achievement within food science and technology across research, industry and education.

George, who has been at the helm of the Food Authority since its inception in April 2004, received the award at the opening ceremony of the AIFST Annual Convention at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre.

AIFST president, Prof Paul Baumgartner cited George's "longstanding and valued contributions to the Institute and his advancement of food safety, regulation, policy and food standards within Australia."

Nomination criteria for the Award of Merit must address the candidate's contribution to research, industry development, education, as well as furthering the aims of the Institute and contribution to the profession.

"George has contributed to food science and technology education in many ways over the years, by both direct participation and via advisory committees.

"As a member of the AIFST Food Microbiology Group he contributed significantly to a number of initiatives including the development of specialist course in public health food microbiology for the food industry, food hygiene courses for the food service industry and the establishment of a national food microbiology conference.

"He has over 50 research and technical publications and almost 100 presentations at scientific conferences, symposia and specialist courses."

Some of George's other achievements include managing the food and water laboratories at NSW Health (1976-1984) where he set standards for laboratory practice and food microbiological techniques that are still used today in laboratories around Australia.

His research into oysters pioneered the introduction of oyster depuration in NSW and was a forerunner to the oyster food safety systems that exist today.

As general manager of the NSW Dairy Corporation (1989-1998), George introduced HACCP-based systems through-chain from dairy farms to distribution - a first in any Australian industry.

George's contribution to the dairy industry includes assisting its transition to deregulation in 2000, and numerous market initiatives. As a member, and later chairman, of the Board of Milk Marketing (NSW), George fostered the ongoing development of successful industry brands, such as Shape, Lite White and Moove, and the introduction of a state-wide school milk program.

For the past 16 years he has represented the Australian dairy industry at the International Dairy Federation, holding leadership positions on the Standing Committee of Marketing and is currently president of the International Milk Promotions Group.

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