SDT holds AGM online

Screenshot from the SDT meeting

Dr Paul Bouchier was the host for the UK Society of Dairy Technology’s 77th annual general meeting, held online. In it, he welcomed Chris Edwards as the incoming president, and the new vice president Nick Edwards. He noted, “It has been a very unusual year, but I am pleased to report that we are still at the forefront of knowledge transfer and technology of the dairy industry. Our passion for dairy is very apparent.”

The SDT has rescheduled its events and is opening online campuses in 2021 to support the current situation for its members. It has relaunched its website and has also made more use of digital technology, with presences on Facebook and Twitter as well. “In the past year there have been more online meetings, so we’ve had some success virtually,” Dr Bouchier says. In February 2021, all of the Society’s journals will be moved online and the e-learning training modules will also be launched.

While the spring conference, which was set to be hosted in Northern Ireland, was cancelled, the SDT hopes to hold it in Spring 2021. Once the current situation eases, Bouchier notes, “our society plans to have more events in different regions of the UK. We’ve been disrupted but we strive to go forward.”

The Society is also working to retain younger members and Edwards agreed that in order to maintain and improve it, “We need to focus on young people, so we can hand this over.” Networking will continue to be critical, he states. “We also need to reach out to our European neighbours and continue our strong links in Ireland. People need to understand what the relevancy is of the SDT.”

Andrew Wilbey is leaving the SDT’s Journal as editor after 14 years, and Dr Liz Whitley will be taking over. Dr Whitley notes that during Wilbey’s tenure, the journal had gone from strength to strength. “We’ve seen tougher acceptance criteria and higher quality papers submitted.”

“SDT is about people, and that is the backbone of the Society and essential to the long-term success of the organisation,” Dr Bouchier concludes.

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