Simon Burns

​​​ Simon Burns  

Simon Burns                                                             
Process Operations Manager       
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My role at the ZERO2FIVE Food Industry Centre

​I joined ZERO2FIVE in 2022 and my role is to manage the practical and operational activities of the pilot plant facilities at the Food Industry Centre and offer technical and operational support to Welsh businesses with their food quality and safety systems, specialising in hygienic factory and equipment design.

  • ​To support Welsh businesses in the use of the pilot plant facilities, enabling them to develop, test and evaluate new products at trial stage, prior to considering full scale production.
  • Offer support and knowledge transfer when upscaling from trial to production. 
  • To give operational and technical knowledge transfer to Welsh food companies to review their processes, reduce waste and make their operations more sustainable.
  • To offer support and knowledge transfer to businesses looking to set up a new production facility or factory or when considering purchasing new equipment.
  • Working on various technical projects with Welsh businesses from internal audits, HACCP review and development to legal compliance and training. Working with SALSA, BRCGS Start and BRCGS accredited companies.
  • Provide a link between the student population and external stakeholders such as IFST, EHEDG and IAFP.
  • Formulate and run technical workshops and deliver to Welsh businesses e.g. Hygienic Design.
  • Conduct applied food industry research.
  • Support the academic team with lectures and practical sessions.
  • Health and Safety responsibilities.
  • Represent ZERO2FIVE at conferences and events including involvement in some organising committees.​​​

Previous Experience

South Wales Food Laboratory Ltd- Laboratory Technician
Various food and drink products. (1997 – 1999)

  • Microbiological and chemical testing of various foods products, water, and environmental samples

Beacon Foods Ltd – Assistant Technical Manager 
Raw and cooked processed vegetable, and fruits ingredients. (1999 -2001)

  • Management of the quality team
  • Supplier assurance including overseas auditing
  • HACCP formation and development
  • Specification writing control and distribution
  • Research and implementation of new wash system suitable for organic products
  • Assessment of barcoding system for product traceability

Welsh Bros Foods Ltd – Operations Director
Meat, poultry, meat products, cooked meats, game (2001-2020) 
(Previously Technical Manager and Technical Director)

  • Oversee and manage all aspects of operation, including site management and personnel
  • Technical and quality system management, policy maintenance and development, maintenance of third-party accreditations.
  • Production planning and staff deployment
  • Purchasing and supply chain management
  • Transport organisation for multi drop deliveries
  • New product development, product re-branding and product costing
  • EU tender completion and delivery of contracts
  • Factory design and planning for incorporation of new processes within production facility
  • Environmental and waste management for all activities in business 

Baker Jones Ltd – Technical and Sales Director 
Cakes, desserts, buffets, afternoon teas (2020-2021)

  • Development of quality and HACCP system for bakery unit, online store, and retail shops
  • Product costings / NPD
  • Prepare and check product information for legal compliance both instore and online
  • Allergen staff training 
  • Set up apprenticeship programmes for staff
  • Wholesale sales
  • Purchasing

Cultech Ltd – Project Quality Manager
Vitamin and mineral food supplements (2021 – 2022)

  • Management and development of supplier approval systems
  • Raw material risk assessment analysis to standardise QC and change control testing, resulting in reduced testing costs and QC ‘held’ time
  • ISO9001, ISO22000, BRCGS audit gap analysis and audit involvement
  • Review and development of SOP’s
  • HACCP development and mentoring of HACCP team members.
  • Project to set up new warehouse facility to include warehouse flow, office requirements and NPD lab
  • Development of KPI’s for goods inwards quality control function including managing external testing budget
  • Report on KPI’s at weekly management meetings
  • Conduct internal audits, GMP audits and factory audits

Qualifications and Professional Memberships

  • BSc (Hons) Food Studies
  • ​BRCGS Lead Auditor Training (Issue 9)
  • ISO9001 Lead Auditor
  • ISO9001 Internal Auditor
  • HACCP Level ​4
  • Certificate in Research Methods
  • Food Safety Level 4
  • IOSH Managing Safely 
  • PCET Preparing to Teach

  • Member and Wales Branch Committee Member of Institute of Food Science and Technology (IFST)
  • Member of International Association for Food Protection (IAFP)
  • Member of European Hygienic Engineering and Design Group (EHEDG)
  • Committee Member UK and Ireland European Hygienic Engineering and Design Group (EHEDG)
  • Working Group Member of European Hygienic Engineering and Design Group (EHEDG)