The award was presented at the house of lords at a breakfast attended by leaders of the industry to celebrate British sausage week, which ended yesterday (Sunday November 6).
Williamson – a leading veterinary surgeon and head the Pig Expert Group at the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) – received the award for her work in developing protocols for dealing with a potential outbreak of porcine epidemic diarrhoea.
One of the Judges said: “Susanna has devoted her time, energy and considerable talent in service to pig producers and she contributes greatly to keeping this country safe from the threats of existing and emerging diseases.
'Significant and lasting contribution'
“In that, she has made a significant and lasting contribution to the British pig industry.”
Williamson appreciated the honour of being selected as the winner, but said that she owed it to her colleagues.
“I can only fulfill my role in pig disease surveillance and investigation through working as part of a team – within APHA and also with colleagues in the pig industry and pig veterinary community.
“It is important to recognise that successful disease surveillance is about working in partnership and also requires veterinary, scientific and technical expertise.”
Cooperation in the industry
She added that cooperation in the industry was specially important as it attempts to address disease issues and minimise antimicrobial use.
The David Black award is presented to somebody who has made a valuable and sustained contribution to the pig industry and has been presented annually since 1960.
Previous winners of the award include: Andrew Knowles, marketing director for pigs at ForFarmers in 2015, organisation Ladies in Pigs in 2014 and vet and industry consultant Pete Bown in 2013.
The breakfast also saw Allan Bennett win the AHDB award for Services to Sausages for his work in helping butchers improving the quality of British sausages.
Meanwhile, retailers Aldi, Marks & Spencer and Waitrose were all winners in this year's British Sausage Week, scoring gold awards for their bangers.
David Black Awards Breakfast winners
- David Black Award 2016 winner: Susanna Williamson
- Services to Sausages 2016 winner: Allan Bennet