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Dr Jeremy Helson has been appointed chief executive of Seafood New Zealand.

Seafood New Zealand executive chairman, Craig Ellison, said Helson, current chief executive of Fisheries Inshore New Zealand, was a natural choice for the position.

“Jeremy has years of experience in the seafood sector in both a government and private sector capacity. His ten years in fisheries with the Ministry for Primary Industries and his six years overseeing New Zealand’s inshore fisheries are invaluable.

"The fisheries sector is going through much change and having such a depth of experience will be essential. We are delighted to welcome Jeremy to the role," said Ellison.

Ellison also gave thanks to outgoing chief executive Tim Pankhurst, who will be retiring on April 3 after seven years in the role; a position he took up following many years heading some of New Zealand's largest newspapers.

"Tim will not be leaving the industry completely, as he will be taking over the role of editor of the Seafood New Zealand magazine."