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Aydn Loffman went from waste administration to environmental agenda champion

Aydn Loffman (he/him)

Group Environmental Improvement Manager, 2 Sisters Food Group

Hand holding a pen over paper with graphs and charts.
Summarise your career to date; how did you end up where you are now?   

I joined the business as a Waste Administrator and was promoted to my first management role as Waste Manager, which I held for three years before becoming Waste Compliance Manager. In 2018, I was moved up to a new group governance role as Group Environmental Improvement Manager, which is my current position.

What was your educational / vocational path to where you are now? 

I studied fine art in higher education before embarking on an environment and sustainability path. I attended many training courses, learning key skills and vocations on the job. This significantly helped me progress in my career.

Photo of Aydn Loffman

I feel a great sense of fulfillment in helping to contribute, however small, to causes that I am passionate about and that help to create a better future for ourselves, future generations, and nature.”

Aydn Loffman (he/him)
Group Environmental Improvement Manager
In your current job what are your key responsibilities?  

To drive the environmental agenda throughout the business; develop environmental policy, strategy and standards. I’m responsible for ensuring environmental compliance, improving the management of risks and reporting on environmental performance. I lead the group environmental governance audit programme to establish our level of compliance and performance, and manage environmental training throughout the company to advocate for improvement and cultural change within the business.

What does an average day/week entail? 

My average day/week can vary significantly due to my involvement in many different projects and responsibilities across multiple group functions, therefore, no two days/weeks are the same. My role is primarily home-based but does include travelling to our manufacturing sites, head offices and external networking events. I work very closely with our sites in a supporting and governance role. Building and maintaining relationships is a core part of my role, internally and externally. Conducting audits, generating governance reports, leading project meetings, chairing group forums, and delivering training are all key regular aspects of my role.

What do you like most about your job, and do you feel you are making a difference in your role?   

Every day can present unique challenges and I embrace being able to build relationships with different individuals and personalities. Working in a subject area that I feel passionate about is particularly rewarding. My aim is to empower other individuals so that, collaboratively, we make a positive impact in the business. This raises awareness beyond the scope of the business, so it feels great to have a wider influence and impact on the environment. Positive progression in the environment and sustainability agenda is demonstrable in our performance.

Man standing with tablet looking at a waste site.
What are the challenges of your job?

Perception of risk is a challenge. It’s my responsibility to ensure all stakeholders have a clear understanding of risk and liability. Dealing with a wide range of individuals can mean a range of opinions and beliefs. Whilst respecting others, I must ensure I am factual in my approach, which sometimes can be particularly difficult where there are various levels of subjectivity to consider. It’s about learning and knowing how to approach certain situations, groups or individuals in the correct manner.

How do you see career opportunities developing in this sector?  

I can see career opportunities in the food manufacturing industry increasing to reflect growing expectations and the implementation of newly required, legally binding targets.

In your career, what changes have you seen in attitudes and career opportunities in sustainability?   

I have seen a major positive shift in attitude towards sustainability over my relatively short career in the industry. Each passing year, the environmental sustainability agenda is moving to the forefront of our business and industry. Key stakeholders are becoming more invested in environmental and sustainability performance and practices. Career opportunities in this field within our business and externally are more available and I can only see this growing, which is critical to achieving global and national targets.

What are the most rewarding aspects of working in your industry/sector? 

I feel a great sense of fulfillment in helping to contribute, however small, to causes that I am passionate about and that help to create a better future for ourselves, future generations, and nature. Equally, I feel proud to work in the food manufacturing industry and play a key part in helping to ensure people have food to eat in challenging times, such as during the pandemic. 

What are the most immediate challenges facing your industry/sector? 

New challenges regularly arise in our industry. Decarbonisation is a massive challenge facing most industries. Movement to automation is becoming more of a solution for production and provides many benefits. However, in turn it also brings many environmental challenges such as energy use and carbon generation. Additionally, new upcoming legislative changes such as permitting regulations and best available technique reviews will also require adaptation.

How are you and your company planning to address/tackle them? What steps need to be taken? 

Our company has a strategy to address the challenge of decarbonisation and to adapt to new regulations. We continue to educate and upskill our workforce to help us achieve our targets and maintain our levels of compliance and above.   

What advice would you give to someone who would like a career in a sustainability role? 

As the global sustainability agenda increases, more opportunities will present themselves. Nothing is more powerful than communication. Develop and maintain a healthy network and surround yourself with people who empower you. Also, remember sometimes the journey is much more valuable than the destination.

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IEMA is the membership body for environment and sustainability professionals