About us

Why FIA?

Having identified the need to add more value to Scotland's primary products and identify and access new markets, SAOS created the Food Integrity Assurance business to work more closely with producers on quality assurance.

FIA's key operational staff and the wider team of more than 50 farm assessors and processing auditors, based throughout Scotland, all have significant experience of delivering QMS and other quality assurance schemes.

The FIA team works with farmers to underpin and promote brands and provide reassurance to consumers of provenance, highest standards of production, animal welfare and wellbeing, to deliver a quality eating experience.

FIA’s business aim is to support, develop and build on Scotland’s key credentials of truly sustainable food production, that is climate-friendly and supportive of our unique rural environment. The ambition to provide a service focused on true collaboration with Scottish farmers and producers is evident in the decision to employ dedicated Scottish Area Managers, who support assessors and members, not only through an audit, but all year round.

 

SAOS's Involvement

The FIA business was set up in October 2021 by SAOS, the agri co-op and food/farming supply chain expert organisation.

Part of the SAOS ‘stable’, as with the ScotEID livestock traceability system established with industry and Government in 2008, FIA runs entirely autonomously, with its own Board, management team and independent accreditation through UKAS.

SAOS is a co-op, owned by around 60 member co-operatives whose collective turnover is around £1.5 billion. The Society was established in 1905 to further co-operation in Scottish agricultural organisations. Over the years, whilst co-ops have remained key to SAOS’s work, this remit has expanded to explore and convert wider opportunities in food and drink supply chains, technology, innovation, data, and climate change response. The need to work more closely with Scotland's primary producers and add more value and benefits to them and their supply chains, led to the creation of FIA. 

 

Food Integrity Assurance's Certification

FIA's certification operations are bound by strict rules and regulations. You can read/download these below.

Our team

Board of Directors

FIA’s Board of Directors is chaired by Uel Morton, who has extensive knowledge of the farming and food sector, and an innate understanding of the vital role farm assurance has in underpinning Scottish brands. He is joined by arable farmer, Anne Rae MacDonald; Dunbia's Business Public Relations Director (UK), Isla Roebuck; Food Standards Scotland Deputy Chair, Louise Welsh; and assurance and accreditation specialist, Steve Belton. Completing the Board are dairy farmer and SAOS Vice Chair, Rory Christie; and SAOS Chief Executive, Tim Bailey.

Our team

Senior team

Stephen Sanderson

General Manager

Stephen has overall responsibility for FIA strategy, resources, governance, and external relationships. Stephen has a wealth of experience within the agricultural sector having previously been a farm manager and more recently within the certification industry holding a variety of positions from farm assessor, Operations manager through to Global Technical Director.

Stephen Sanderson
Stephen Sanderson
General Manager
Fiona Sanderson

Operations & Data Manager

Fiona has overall responsibility for the operational delivery and data quality in relation to the delivery of FIA services. Fiona comes from a farming background and has successfully run her own business prior to her extensive operational experience within the certification industry, holding key roles including certifier for livestock schemes and Operations manager with a focus on detail and quality.

Fiona Sanderson
Fiona Sanderson
Operations & Data Manager
Jane Johnson

Quality Manager

Jane is responsible for managing the accreditation and quality processes in relation to assessment and certification activity for FIA. Having come from a farming background, Jane has extensive experience in managing and operating a wide variety of certified schemes within an accredited environment, holding key roles including Operations and Planning Manager and Operations Director.

Jane Johnson
Jane Johnson
Quality Manager
David McHarg

Livestock Technical Manager

David is FIA’s Livestock Technical Manager, taking the lead role in managing the Team Leaders and assessor team providing training, support, and assistance to the FIA livestock assessor team and technical guidance to external clients. David has extensive experience as a successful organic farmer prior to taking up a career as farm assessor providing assessment services for multiple schemes including dairy, cattle & sheep, and crops.

David McHarg
David McHarg
Livestock Technical Manager
Tracy Coyle

Planning Manager

Tracy is responsible for all assessment resource and planning in relation to FIA assessments drawing from previous assessment planning and logistics experience to ensure our assessment activity is conducted efficiently and sustainably.

Tracy Coyle
Tracy Coyle
Planning Manager
Donna Nixon

Team Leader Central Scotland

Donna provides regional support to the assessor team in Central Scotland. Coming from a farming background and studying agriculture and business management Donna has over 30 years’ experience in various positions from Scientific Officer with Scottish Agricultural College to 17 years working with MAFF/SVS/APHA in varying roles from Animal Health Officer, and Resilience, Technical Manager and Delivery Team Leader prior to her move into the world of assurance as a Dairy Schemes Manager.

Donna Nixon
Donna Nixon
Team Leader Central Scotland

Our team

Board of Directors

FIA’s Board of Directors is chaired by Uel Morton, who has extensive knowledge of the farming and food sector, and an innate understanding of the vital role farm assurance has in underpinning Scottish brands. He is joined by arable farmer, Anne Rae MacDonald; Dunbia's Business Public Relations Director (UK), Isla Roebuck; Food Standards Scotland Deputy Chair, Louise Welsh; and assurance and accreditation specialist, Steve Belton. Completing the Board are dairy farmer and SAOS Vice Chair, Rory Christie; and SAOS Chief Executive, Tim Bailey.

Current Vacancies

Work with us

We currently have no vacancies