Pioneer Hi-Bred, the world’s leading agricultural seed company and
a manufacturer of genetically modified food products, has appointed
Thierry Habotte to the newly created post of European communications and
public affairs manager.
Habotte is based in Brussels and joins the firm from drug company
Pharmacia and Upjohn, where he worked in the Animal Health division as
public relations and public affairs manager for Europe, Middle East and
One of Habotte’s first tasks will be a review of the company’s PR agency
needs in Europe. A number of local Pioneer offices retain agencies. Town
and Country PR represent Pioneer in the UK.
’I might need some external support in terms of agencies on a
pan-European level, for political monitoring, corporate and public
affairs, and media relations,’ he said.
Pioneer is the world’s biggest producer of seeds for crops like corn,
soya, sunflowers and rape seed. It employs 5,000 staff and had a
turnover of pounds 1.25 billion in the year to August 1997.
Habotte’s responsibilities will include overseeing media relations,
representing the company on the trade associations of which it is a
member and helping to position it on European issues such as the
agricultural subsidy regime and genetically modified foods.
One of Pioneer’s products, a genetically modified corn seed, is
currently awaiting approval from the European Commission so that it can
be sold in Europe.
The company has offices in 12 European countries. Habotte reports to
Brussels-based European government affairs director Tim Stocker.