Former chief executive of the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC) in Northern Ireland, Ian Stevenson will be the keynote speaker at a Northern Ireland Institute of Agricultural Science (NIIAS) breakfast seminar.

The event will take place at the Agri Food and Bioscience Institute (AFBI) conference hall, Large Park, Hillsborough, on Thursday, December 14, 2023. Proceedings get underway at 7:45a.m with the seminar itself beginning at 8:00a.m.

For many, the NIIAS event represents the traditional starting point of their visit to the Royal Ulster Agricultural Society (RUAS) Winter Fair.  

Former LMC chief

Ian Stevenson, who was the former CEO of the LMC, is now chief executive of the Dairy Council for Northern Ireland.

He hails from a strong farming community in north Co. Antrim and has over 28 years of professional experience, working in technical, policy and leadership roles within Northern Ireland’s agri-food sector.

Previously, he has also worked with Moy Park and the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU).

The Dairy Council acts on behalf of dairy farmers and processors, communicating on the natural goodness and quality of Northern Ireland’s milk and dairy foods. 

Stevenson’s address to the NIIAS seminar will focus on the important role that the milk sector plays in the sustainable nutrition of a growing world population and how servicing that growing demand for milk and dairy foods can be done in a sustainable manner.

Since taking up his new role, he has already highlighted the opportunities associated with a more sustainable milk industry.

He spoke at a recent EU Sustainable Dairy Symposium, making the point that farmers and processors are following evidence-based guidance, where climate change mitigation is concerned. They are also investing in new technologies.

“Recently I heard the phrase ‘comfortable co-existence’,” Stevenson said.

“I think this is a fitting description of the way climate change mitigation works hand-in-hand with productive and profitable farming whilst retaining the culture and identity of the farming family model.

“It’s important when we talk about targets and emissions that we don’t lose sight of the fact that the dairy sector in Northern Ireland is made up of 3,200 dairy farming families, who are the fabric of rural Northern Ireland.”


NIIAS represents the professional interests of agriculture and food science graduates working in Northern Ireland.

The organisation’s membership is drawn equally from the public and private sector with every aspect of Northern Ireland’s agri-food industry represented.

NIIAS membership is open to all agriculture and food graduates working in Northern Ireland.