Chair and two member vacancies on the ACMSF

Last updated:
13 December 2016
ACMSF logo
The Food Standards Agency Chair Heather Hancock is inviting applications to fill the posts of Chair and two new members of the Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food (ACMSF): a medical microbiologist and an expert in consumer issues.

The post for a Chair and a medical microbiologist will become vacant on 31 March 2017 and there is a current vacancy for an expert in consumer issues.

The ACMSF is the independent expert committee which advises the FSA on microbiological food safety.

Committee members and the Chair are not paid. They receive remuneration for attendance at meetings and reimbursement of reasonable expenses.

About the vacancies


  • The post of Chair of the ACMSF will require a person of national or, ideally, international standing, preferably in the field of medicine or science. The successful candidate will contribute to the formulation and delivery of risk assessment advice on the microbiological safety of food to the Food Standards Agency. 
  • The Chair of the ACMSF has a vital role in guiding and communicating the Committee’s discussion and his or her independence must be beyond question. The Food Standards Agency has therefore decided that the Chair of the ACMSF (and similar committees advising the Agency) should not be employed by, or receive personal remuneration from, industrial organisations or pressure groups during his or her term of appointment.
  • Candidates must be strong team motivators with common sense and good analytical skills.  Putting consumers first and being able to recognise the impact of ACMSF advice on the FSA and the public are extremely important requirements.

Medical Microbiologist and Consumer Issues Expert

  • The vacancies are for individuals with expertise in medical microbiology and consumer issues.  Applicants should have a proven academic and/or professional track record of expertise in each specialism. They should be educated to degree level in the relevant discipline. The expert in consumer issues may not be educated to degree level but applicants for this role should have practical experience of working in consumer affairs preferably in relation to food.
  • Applicants should have the ability to work effectively in a team environment and possess strong analytical, problem solving, negotiation and influencing skills. They should be able to demonstrate sound judgement in dealing with complex scientific and technical issues, with the ability to weigh issues outside their own specialist area. They must be able to operate within a committee structure to arrive at sound, balanced and timely decisions.
  • Experience of operating within a committee structure and of participating in meetings of multi-disciplinary groups advising on complex scientific, technical or medical questions is desirable.

Appointments to the ACMSF are made strictly on merit by a fair and open process in accordance with the Commissioner for Public Appointments’ Code of Practice, taking account of equality and diversity. The FSA operates a Guaranteed Interview Scheme for people with disabilities who meet the essential published criteria.

How to apply

If you are interested in being considered for this post, you can get an information pack and application form from:

Ms Sarah Butler
ACMSF Secretariat
First Floor, Aviation House
125 Kingsway
London WC2B 6NH

tel: 0207 276 8947
fax: 0207 276 8910

Application closing date and interview date

  • The closing date for receipt of completed applications is 27 January 2017
  • Interview dates are:
    • for the Chair 23 February 2017
    • for the member vacancies 24 February 2017.

About the ACMSF

Information about the ACMSF can be found on the Committee’s website at