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Dan Jago appointed chairman of WSTA

The WSTA (Wine and Spirit Trade Association) Annual Conference in September announced that the role of WSTA chairman would be taken over by Dan Jago CEO of Berry Bros & Rudd.

Last month marked the trade association’s first Executive Board meeting with Jago at the helm where he set out his vision for the industry.

With the EU Referendum vote now more than four months ago, the political, economic and social landscape remains uncertain.

Addressing the board, Dan Jago indicated he would not let this deter him from focusing on his main priority; ensuring that wine and spirit trade continues to flow during the entire Brexit process and into the new trading environment.

Jago also identified his intention to strengthen the WSTA by growing its membership to represent more and more producers, importers, exporters, transporters and sellers.

However the new chairman did not let leaving Europe dominate his agenda, just as it will not completely overshadow the day-to-day spirits business.

The WSTA are there to help members through every labelling, regulatory, importing, exporting or market query as well as ensuring the voice of the industry was heard within Whitehall and Parliament.

Dan Jago, chairman of the WSTA Board says: “Taking the helm as chairman of the WSTA is both an honour and a challenge, but something I did not agree to lightly.

The reality is that we are now facing one of the toughest eras the wine and spirits trade has ever faced. Brexit is a monumental challenge for the trade, which is already having a potentially damaging impact on the industry.

My focus is to ensure that the WSTA meet these challenges head on and that we are extremely vigilant in looking after the members' trade interests. It is incredibly important that the WSTA is in the best position to help guide Government on how to protect the flow of trade, secure jobs and allow our sector to continue to grow.

Brexit is a reality and we need to maximise every opportunity. I am confident that the WSTA team have the expertise and knowledge to steer the members through these uncharted waters.

It is clear that in this time of uncertainty, standing side-by-side with industry partners to show Government, and the world, we are united in our aims is key. I will be focusing on helping the team grow membership of the WSTA and making the association the lead voice for the alcohol industry.”

Chief executive of the WSTA, Miles Beale, says: “The WSTA warmly welcome Dan into the fold. It is incredibly important to us that the person who steers our ship has extensive experience in the wine and spirit trade. Dan’s knowledge of the industry is encyclopaedic and just as importantly he has a great passion for the products which we represent. There are challenging and exciting times ahead and Dan has the drive to ensure we make the most of every opportunity.”

7 November 2016 - Sam Coyne The Drinks Report, editorial assistant