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Safety, health and leadership theme for IOSH food and drink conference

14 September 2015

Ways safety professionals can be proactive in promoting occupational health and employee wellbeing will be highlighted at a major food and drink industry conference.

Delegates attending the National Food and Drink Manufacturing Health and Safety Conference 2015 will receive two days of expert insight around the theme of ‘A healthy recipe for leaders’.

The conference, organised by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health’s (IOSH) Food and Drink Group, will explore fresh ways to address some of the industry’s most pressing safety and health issues including musculoskeletal disorders, working in confined spaces and safety in food hygiene.

Paul Fenner, a member of the IOSH Food and Drink Group’s conference organising committee, said: “Our performance as ‘UK plc’ shows that safety is on an improving trend whereas health is not yet on the same path.

“Thousands of people each year are dying as a result of work-related health issues with many others living with conditions which are a legacy of past exposures to the likes of asbestos and excessive vibrations and noise at work. As a profession we need to identify early the occupational health risks that our employees are exposed to and have a balanced approach to managing them.

“We cannot afford to leave a legacy of work-related health issues for future safety and health practitioners to sort out. It’s about being proactive on these legacy issues now.”

Leading names within the sector including 2 Sisters Food Group and G’s Growers Ltd will share examples of best practice at the conference.

Delegates’ leadership skills will also be brought into focus by the conference’s keynote speakers, Stephen Carver of Cranfield University and performance coach Steve Krause.

Paul said: “When it comes to engaging with people at all levels throughout business some safety professionals have difficulties not because of their technical capabilities, but because they have not had the chance to develop and practice their own leadership skills.

“We wanted to give people the chance to inwardly reflect on their own leadership skills and look for opportunities to get better results for themselves and their organisations.”

In addition, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) will address delegates about the revised A recipe for safety guidelines which it published earlier this year.

A recipe for safety has been credited with helping to more than half the number of injuries and fatal accidents in the food and drink manufacturing sector over the last 25 years.

The revised edition includes an increased focus on occupational health and involved input from a number of experts from within the industry, including members of the IOSH Food and Drink Group.

The National Food and Drink Manufacturing Health and Safety Conference 2015 will take place at Chesford Grange Hotel, Kenilworth, Warwickshire, on 6-7 October.

Delegates will be able to discuss topics and issues highlighted at the conference via Twitter by using the hashtag #fdconf15.

To book a place call the IOSH Bookings Team on +44(0)116 257 3197 or email bookings@iosh.co.uk.


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