The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue has today (Thursday, May 26) announced that a former CEO of Bord Bia is to lead the state seafood development agency.

Aidan Cotter has been selected as the new chair of Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) following a public service appointment service (PAS) process.

For the next three years, Cotter will lead the agency which is responsible for developing the Irish seafood industry.

BIM provides technical expertise, business support, funding, training and promotes responsible environmental practice.

seafood BIM

Aidan Cotter served as CEO of Bord Bia from 2004 until 2017, having previously worked for the organisation in Dusseldorf and London.

Cotter, who is also a practicing barrister, oversaw the extension of the Bord Bia office network into the Middle East and Asia and the establishment of the Consumer Insight Centre.

In 2012, he initiated and led the launch of Origin Green, the world’s first national sustainability programme for food and drink.

It aims to establish Ireland’s environmental credentials and its international reputation as a world leader in sustainability.

Cotter served as chair of Slaney Foods, the joint venture between ABP Foods Group and the Fane Valley Group, from 2017 to 2021. He currently chairs the Plastics Action Alliance.

In March 2021, Aidan Cotter was appointed by Minister McConalogue to lead the Seafood Sector Task Force to examine the implications of Brexit on the Irish fishing industry.

Recommendations from that task force are now being undertaken by BIM.

Commenting on the appointment, Minister Charlie Mc Conalogue said:

“BIM provides an essential service in supporting and developing the seafood sector and Aidan will lead the work of BIM during this particularly challenging period dealing with the impacts of the EU/UK Trade and Co-operation Agreement and high fuel prices.

“I am fully satisfied that Aidan experience in both his executive role in leading Bord Bia and his wide experience in supporting and growing the food sector in Ireland ensures that he has the skills and experience for this important role,” the minister said.