The UK's leading drinks manufacturers have appointed Seymour Fortescue as the first non-industry chairman of self-regulatory body the Portman Group.

The new position is designed to provide independent leadership on marketing and social responsibility standards for drinks producers, said Portman today (14 August). 

Previous chairs have been appointed from among the senior drinks executives, who make up the Portman Group's Council.

Mark Hunter, the current Portman chairman and CEO of Molson Coors UK, will be stepping down.

Fortescue has held several senior positions in marketing, regulation and health promotion across the private, voluntary and public sectors. 

Fortescue, said: "The Portman Group is already a highly respected alcohol regulator and is a key player in addressing the adverse aspects of our drinking culture. I firmly believe that self-regulation based on a tough code of practice that is rigorously monitored and enforced is the right way forward."