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DFC chief to head international dairy body

The executive director of the Dairy Farmers of Canada has been elected president of the International Dairy Federation.

Richard Doyle, the DFC’s Ottawa-based executive director, was named to a four-year term as IDF president, succeeding Jim Begg, director general of Dairy UK. The election was held Tuesday during the World Dairy Summit, which ends Friday in Mexico City.

IDF is a knowledge exchange body focused on topics such as the role of dairy products in human nutrition, environmental sustainability, animal health, international standards and methods of analysis. Its network of experts covers 56 countries worldwide, representing about 85 per cent of world milk production. Brazil, Egypt and Lithuania recently became member countries in the federation.

The international organization plays a key role in building consensus and developing positions when dealing with international organizations such as Codex, the International Standards Organization (ISO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE).

“I strongly believe that IDF is well positioned to respond to the future challenges facing the global dairy industry, both in terms of offering a well-recognized scientific and technical base and as an international forum where industry leaders can share their experiences, solutions and strategies to address an ever-evolving dairy marketplace,” Doyle said in an IDF release.

“For example, it is essential that the global dairy industry co-ordinates its science-based message about the nutritive value and health benefits of dairy products, in the face of increasing competition from substitutes for dairy protein and nutrients.”

Of the federation’s new members, he said “enlarging our network will further strengthen the IDF’s position towards international organizations. We have in place a strong IDF, and with the backing of our members, we must develop our potential.”

Doyle has worked in the Canadian dairy industry for 32 years, the IDF said, and has been involved with the international group for all that time, working at its national committee level in Canada as well as at the international level.

The next World Dairy Summit will be held in September 2009 in Berlin.

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