The British Game Alliance has announced that Liam Stokes has been appointed as its new chief executive officer.
Liam has dedicated his career to the countryside, most recently stepping up to the role of senior leader for farming sector policy at DEFRA, where he has worked at the heart of future food and farming policy.
Liam has spent the last year briefing Ministers and liaising with departments across the Government as his teams developed strategy, policy and legislation for the farming sectors as preparations continue to exit the EU.
Prior to joining Defra, Liam was head of campaigns at the Countryside Alliance for over three years, where he helped lay the foundations for the British Game Alliance’s shoot assurance scheme. Liam has also worked for the GWCT in their upland research department and spent over six years at Lackham College running the Game and Conservation department and running the Lackham Shoot, giving him a huge breadth of shooting knowledge.
He has served as a member of BASC’s England committee, given evidence on the value of game shooting to Parliamentary Select Committees and developed a foundation degree programme in Game and Wildlife Management with the Royal Agricultural University.
Liam will be tasked with leading the BGA into the next phase of development, generating further new markets for game in the UK and overseas and using his background in politics, government and shoot management to communicate the value of a self-regulating shooting sector.
Liam said: ‘I have been passionate about the mission of the British Game Alliance since its launch. The manifold benefits of game shooting can only be realised if there is a sustainable market for game meat, and such a market can only exist if underpinned by credible shoot assurance.
‘BGA members boast the highest welfare and environmental standards in the rearing and sale of game meat, and are trailblazers for the future of sustainable shooting and game meat production.
‘The shooting sector uniting behind the BGA’s unique shoot and game farm assurance schemes is a landmark moment in the development of game shooting and the game meat market, and it is a privilege to be appointed CEO at this vital time.’
Ivan Shenkman, chairman of the BGA, added: ‘Liam has a skill set that will ensure the BGA can elevate itself to the next level in securing a strong and sustainable market for game based on best practice standards from egg to plate.
‘His immense depth of knowledge in all aspects shooting, as well as in the political arena, can only be good for all the shooting community and the BGA’s next phase of growth.’
This appointment follows the recent news of Tom Adams’ departure from the organisation at the end of March 2020, to pursue new challenges in the commercial world.
Tom founded the BGA in 2018 and has made enormous progress for the future of the shooting industry by securing new markets around the UK with heavy hitters such as Samworth Brothers, and new avenues overseas with 250,000 game birds exported to Hong Kong and Macau last season for the high end restaurant market.