Biotechnology firm appoints whisky veteran as new CEO

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A BIOTECHNOLOGY firm has announced the appointment of its new CEO as whisky veteran Iain Lochhead.

Mr Lochhead who has been with  Horizon Proteins for a year, makes the move to CEO in a boardroom reshuffle with Co-founder Nik Willoughby becoming Chief Technology Officer.

Mr Lochhead, the former Operations Director of Bacardi has over 20 years experience in the whisky industry.

Iain Lochhead - Business News Scotland
Photograph by Martin Shields) Pioneering biotechnology firm Horizon Proteins’ Chief Executive Officer Iain Lochhead

Horizon Proteins provide sustainability solutions by transforming underutilised whisky distilling co-products into cost-effective, high-quality nutrients for the aqua and animal feed industries.

The patented technology, which involves recovering protein from pot ale, liquid residue left over from the whisky-making process, is a said to be a crucial element in developing Scotland’s circular bioeconomy.

Former Bacardi UK operations director Iain Lochhead,, joined the company last year and has been providing strategic consulting.

Chairman Ian Hamilton said: “Iain’s appointment is tremendous news; he brings with him vast knowledge of the industry that will help us drive the business forward.

“He was immediately excited by our technology and understood how it can revolutionise the whisky industry while at the same time bring wider sustainability benefits.

“Iain has already had a positive impact, in particular expanding our discussions within the industry and it is exciting to have him on board.”

Every year, the malt whisky industry in Scotland alone produces around three billion litres of pot ale.

Nik Willoughby - Business News Scotland
(Photograph by Martin Shields ) Horizon Proteins’ Chief Technology Officer Nik Willoughby.

Horizon Proteins’ technology, which has undergone three large scale industrial trials, provides environmentally and economically sustainable methods to manage it.

The protein content of pot ale made it nutritionally useful as a feed for fish, and particularly species of salmon according to the co,pany.

Nik Willoughby said: “The addition of Iain to the team is a clear signalling of our intent to show the market what Horizon Proteins can do.

“It also gives us greater capacity to explore other opportunities in this area, be dynamic and positively contribute to true sustainability both in Scotland and globally.”