A MUSSELBURGH store boss has made history after becoming the youngest person ever to be appointed president of the Scottish Grocers’ Federation (SGF).

Dan Brown, 28, the driving force behind the award-winning Nisa Pinkie Farm Convenience Store, has taken on the reins as the convenience sector grapples with the ongoing challenges of an unprecedented public health crisis as a result of coronavirus.

His inauguration as the youngest president in the organisation’s 102-year history took place during a virtual meeting of the SGF national executive.

Mr Brown’s presidency will focus on supporting retailers and maximising the opportunities provided by the new customer appetite for shopping locally.

The Musselburgh resident said: “2020 has already presented us with circumstances that nobody could have predicted, and as an industry retailers have fought through these challenging times with heroic strength and resilience.

“It is now more crucial than ever to maintain this united strength and, with the growing influence and support that the SGF can provide, we hope to do everything we can to equip and support our fellow retailers through the next few years of challenge and uncertainty.”

Dr Pete Cheema, SGF CEO, added: “We are in unprecedented times. No one could have predicted that Dan, who will be the youngest ever SGF president in our history, would take the reins of the presidency as we struggle with the impact of a global pandemic.

“There are massive challenges ahead but there are also real opportunities, the likes of which we haven’t seen before. Dan has the energy, the drive and the enthusiasm to help us shape the industry – and SGF – over the next two years to ensure we maximise these opportunities. The torch has been passed to a new generation – I look forward to working with him tremendously.”

Mr Brown, who grew up in Kinross, will formally receive the chain of office at the SGF annual conference, scheduled for April 2021.

He grew up working alongside his father, Stephen, at David Sands Ltd, which operated 30 stores in Fife and Tayside prior to selling to the Co-op in 2012.

Mr Brown studied retail marketing at Stirling University while working for various independent convenience stores in his free time.

After graduating in 2014, he was brought on to assist the launch of the new Pinkie Farm Convenience Store for nine months before going to Scotmid to complete his management training.

He spent two years at Scotmid managing two of its Edinburgh stores before moving to Giacopazzi’s in Kinross, where he co-ordinated the design of their new store, serving as manager for two years.

In 2018, he was given the opportunity to become managing director of Lothian Stores Ltd, which operates Musselburgh’s Pinkie Farm Convenience Store, where he can be found most days.

Mr Brown was appointed to the national executive board for the Scottish Grocers Federation in late 2018.

He takes over as president from Asim Sarwar, managing director of United Wholesale Scotland.