Trade body Pulses UK appoints new president

By Jerome Smail

- Last updated on GMT

James Maguire
James Maguire

Related tags vegan Ingredients & nutrition

James Maguire has been named as the new president of Pulses UK, the trade association representing the processors and users of British-produced pulses.

The appointment was confirmed at the organisation’s annual meeting held earlier this month.

Maguire previously served as vice president of Pulses UK from 2019, alongside his roles as sales manager and SBU product manager at agricultural producer KWS-UK. He succeeds Lewis Cottey, pulse trader at ADM Agriculture, as president.

Plant-based demand

“With demand for plant-based protein rapidly gaining traction and offering the industry sustainable crop options in peas and beans, I am delighted to have been elected as president for Pulses UK during this period and am grateful to be able to represent our members at an important time for British farming,”​ said Maguire.

“Lewis has done a fantastic job acting on behalf of the association’s 51 member companies to secure a brighter future for the industry during a period of intense upheaval and uncertainty,” ​he added.

Maguire said the role of the organisation over the next two years would be communicating the value of pulses in the rotation and capitalising on increasing demand for domestically produced protein.

“I firmly believe that pulses play an integral role in realising policy-makers’ environmental ambitions and we will be working to promote pulses as a healthy, high-protein and high-fibre product, made at home within more sustainable agri-food systems,”​ he said.

In addition to Maguire’s appointment, Michael Shuldham, commercial assistant at LS Plant Breeding, will take the role of vice president of Pulses UK, while treasurer Barry Reed remains in place for a further term.

Protein source

The role of pulses as protein has come under the spotlight in recent years as an increasing number of consumers are adopting a plant-based diet.

Campden BRI is currently involved in a two-year research project​ aiming to help food and drink manufacturers use protein-rich plant-based ingredients more effectively.

Ingredients research team leader Tiia Morsky said: “Protein functionality plays a key role in product development and consumer appeal. Egg, for example, is a unique multi-functional ingredient that is used for aeration, emulsification, enriching, colour, shine and structure formation.

“Replacing this ingredient is, understandably, difficult for manufacturers, However, our work has found pulses – such as peas, beans and lentils – display great functional properties with significantly higher foam expansion and foam volume stability when compared to egg white proteins.”

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