Scottish Wholesale Association (SWA) has appointed Ylva Haglund, a highly experienced campaigns and sustainability professional, as its new head of sustainability and engagement.

Ylva joins the SWA from Zero Waste Scotland where she was campaigns manager leading on consumer food waste prevention behaviour change projects as well as the high-profile Love Food Hate Waste campaign in Scotland. Her previous roles include awareness-raising and implementation of policy at environmental charities Keep Scotland Beautiful and Scottish Environment LINK. In addition, she is a member of the European Commission expert group on food waste.

Her wide-ranging role at the SWA will focus on helping members share knowledge and resources to understand and overcome the challenges on the road to net zero, and in doing so create a greener, more sustainable local food and drink supply chain.

Working closely with government, stakeholder groups and colleagues at the FWD (Federation of Wholesale Distributors), Ylva will lead on the wholesale sector’s decarbonisation and net-zero strategy, incorporating Phase 2 (buildings and energy use) and Phase 3 (people and travel) of the SWA’s ongoing ‘Decarbonisation of the Wholesale Industry’ project.

She will also help deliver a communications strategy to improve member engagement and investment return, both around sustainability and within the wider context of the SWA.

Colin Smith, SWA chief executive, said: “This is a key role for us and confirmation of our commitment to our members and sector in exploring opportunities and finding solutions to make our industry cleaner and greener. Ylva joins us after we were invited by the Scottish Government to sit on the new Zero Emission Truck Taskforce so her appointment coincides with many of our members starting to have conversations about how they can transition to zero-emission trucks.

“Ylva has an impressive track record and is well placed to help our members on their journey to incorporate a just transition to new technologies as they decarbonise their businesses and meet environmental and sustainability targets. She will also develop relevant training programmes and advise members on key certification, via the SWA Training Academy.

“As a member of the independent judging panel for the SWA Achievers Awards 2022, Ylva has already met many of our members and is looking forward to getting out and about to meet more in the coming months.”

Commenting on her appointment, Ylva said: “The prospect of joining such a forward-thinking trade association and leading on sustainability and environmental issues affecting the Scottish and wider UK wholesale industry is hugely exciting for me. I will use my experience to help our wholesalers achieve their ambitions as we accelerate the transition to net zero and progress towards a circular economy.

“The SWA is highly regarded by the Scottish Government and other stakeholders and has forged excellent relationships with politicians and stakeholders, particularly during the Covid pandemic when Colin and his team were instrumental in securing much-needed industry funding via the Scottish Food and Drink Wholesale Resilience Fund.

“I’m looking forward to meeting members and working with them as we move on from the pandemic and make plans for the future.”

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