Somehow, you just knew that whoever was chosen to head Britain's first independent Food Standards Agency, someone within the UK's small and ever growing army of food campaigners would come out of the woodwork snarling criticism. And so it was on Wednesday, when the name readers of The Grocer had known for weeks was officially revealed to be Oxford professor Sir John Krebs. Thankfully, it was not, as many serious minded commentators had feared, a food luvvie with barely enough credentials and brainpower to hold their own during a debate on Channel 4's Big Breakfast. So, after weeks of waiting, no puff of white smoke emerged from the Department of Health, just the mandatory appearance on BBC2's Newsnight where Sir John, to his credit, handled himself with aplomb in the face of a pontificating Jeremy Paxman at his beavering best. That, of course, will be the first of many such appearances in the months ahead for Sir John and his top team of deputy Suzi Leather and chief executive Geoffrey Podger. Their task will be to convince a doubting populace that they can be trusted to represent openly our interests on food safety matters after years in which secrecy has more often than not been the order of the day down Whitehall way. It had to be a scientist rather than a headline grabbing consumer campaigner to head the FSA and so why not the experienced Sir John for the £96,000 a year post? He demonstrated during his time as the head of the national environment research council that he has the credentials to inspire confidence while heading one of the most important agencies ever. To potential critics, Sir John promises that, within three months of its establishment this summer, the FSA will publish a set of objectives by which it can be judged. It will also, he tells us, be a "beacon of openness and a model for the best use of science". This magazine welcomes the FSA and Sir John's appointment. But, like everyone else, we will be monitoring its progress closely. It's been a long time coming. Clive Beddall, Editor {{OPINION }}