LONDON, ENGLAND — After nearly 150 years, the National Association of British & Irish Millers (nabim) recently changed its name to UK Flour Millers.

Alex Waugh, director of UK Flour Millers, said the rebrand is aimed at raising the industry’s profile at a pivotal time in its history due to the unprecedented demands of the COVID-19 pandemic and the recent departure from the EU.

“The decision has not been taken lightly, but as an acknowledgement of changing times and perceptions,” Waugh said. “We did a survey of what people think about the flour milling industry and nabim and found that most people outside of the baking sector didn’t know the flour milling industry existed. And when asked what their image of flour milling was, it was a bit old-fashioned.”

Despite its “simple and direct” new name, Waugh said UK Flour Millers’ role as a trade body will not change. Instead, it will look to better represent the needs and views of members across the UK in changing times.

“We are adapting to the changing political landscape that comes with Brexit and the development of devolution in the United Kingdom,” he said. “Flour milling is an ancient art, but our members invest over 15% of their gross margin every year in infrastructure, research and developing the next generation of millers. They quite rightly demand an association that is professional, reliable, important, modern and efficient — reflecting the industry it represents.

“The twin challenges of COVID-19 and Brexit this year have reinforced our vital role as both an advocate and a champion of the flour milling industry, and as UK Flour Millers we will continue to work closely with government and consumers on behalf of our membership.”