By Kristy Dorsey

Roslin Technologies has appointed a new chief executive as it looks to step up commercialisation of its technology solutions for the food, agriculture and veterinary sectors.

Ernst van Orsouw will take over from executive director and founder Glen Illing as Roslin Technologies moves from focusing on technological innovations to deploying those advances through sales and partnership agreements. One of the first priorities will be to secure commercial agreements with cultivated meat companies for the use of Roslin’s stem cell lines to enhance food production without additional strain on the environment.

Mr van Orsouw joins from genetics specialist Genus where he was global director of strategy and marketing for the company’s Pig Improvement Company division. He has more than 15 years’ experience in agribusiness and has previously led on a series of strategic initiatives, including acquisitions, across the animal breeding and genetics sectors.

Mr van Orsouw said: “Roslin Technologies is the jewel in the crown of Scottish and British agribusiness, and I am excited to join at this stage in the company’s growth. Over the last few years, the company has built a world-class scientific platform that can fundamentally disrupt key areas of the AgTech industry.”

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Set up in 2016, Roslin Technologies works closely with the Roslin Institute, the creators of Dolly the Sheep, and the University of Edinburgh. Along with its animal stem cell platform, it has developed genomic breeding techniques and uses these same technologies to provide a range of solutions in animal health.

Andy Porter, chairman of Roslin Technologies, said the appointment comes after an “extensive worldwide search” for the right person to lead in this next stage of growth.

“Ernst, with his deep understanding of the sector and multiple connections around the world, is ideally placed to enable Roslin Technologies to reach its undoubted potential as a global influencer capable of matching food production levels needed to feed a global population with the critical requirement to achieve this goal without placing undue burden on our precious natural environment,” he said.