John Meale, Managing Director of leading loading bay and materials handling equipment specialists, Thorworld Industries, has been appointed Vice President of the Federation Europeenne de la Manutention (FEM), the European Federation of Materials Handling.

His appointment, for a two year term, was made at the recent FEM Congress in Cannes. It was attended by more than 150 delegates from across Europe, as well as visitors from the United States and Japan.

A well-known and respected figure within the European Materials Handling Industry, Mr Meale is also President of FEM's Elevating Equipment Product Group. In addition, he is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (FCILT), a member of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), a former President of the British Materials Handling Federation (BMHF) and past President of the Association of Loading & Elevating Equipment Manufacturers (ALEM).  

FEM represents the technical, economic and political interests of the European materials handling industry. It looks after technical issues and improved safety at work through the introduction of guidelines and business codes, acting as the link between the industry and relevant national and international authorities.

Commenting on his appointment, Mr Meale said: "I am very much aware of the importance of FEM and its vital contribution to the materials handling sector through its influential position in formulating appropriate standards and lobbying on behalf of the industry in Europe".

"In my role as Vice President I will stand up for the future of a strong UK materials handling Industry within a wider European context and, on a personal level, one of the issues I shall continue to raise for my Product Group is that of poor quality and potentially dangerous loading ramps and other inferior materials handling equipment coming into the UK from Eastern Europe and beyond, without the appropriate CE certification. It is vital that the EU monitors and controls such Equipment".

A variety of topical issues were discussed at the FEM Congress. These included the world economic slowdown, production over capacity in certain sectors, rising unemployment, high interest rates, inflation and the increase in raw material costs.

Mr Adrian Harris, Secretary General of Orgalime, the European Engineering Industries Association, of which FEM is a member, told delegates that rising steel prices were causing major headaches for member companies.

He said it was proving impossible to pass on in full recent price increases to customers, and there was a clear lack of EU support and investment for the European steel industry, with far stronger investment taking place outside the EU.

Thorworld Industries, the Chesterfield, Derbyshire, based company, was established by Mr Meale in 1981 and is now firmly established as the foremost one-stop, single source supplier to the loading bay and materials handling sectors; being recognised as both a leader and innovator in the provision of quality engineered loading and unloading equipment, accessories and safety aids.

The company provides a one-stop single source supply for dock shelters & seals, dock levellers, dock plates & boards, dock & vehicle bumpers and modular loading platforms, together with a range of mobile yard ramps – for purchase or rental on a sale or return basis – through their specialist RentARamp division, as well as the Truckloada mobile yardlift, the Dockloada scissor lift platform, and an extensive range of loading bay accessories and safety aid

BSI registered with ISO 9002 accreditation since 1992, as well as CE mark certification, it was one of the first companies in the industry to achieve the ISO 9001:2000 international quality management standard.

Thorworld is a major supplier to various industries, with numerous prestigious customers across the UK and mainland Europe in distribution, logistics, transport, retailing, food, drink, manufacturing and the service sectors.

For more information about their market-leading loading bay equipment, accessories and safety aids, and to obtain a copy of the latest 2008/9 Product Range Catalogue, contact: Thorworld Industries Ltd, Station Lane Industrial Estate, Old Whittington, Chesterfield, Derbyshire, S41 9QX.  Tel: 01246 260981.  Fax:  01246 260493.  Email:  Web:

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A high resolution photo to accompany this press release is available by clicking here.

Photo Caption:

John Meale, founder and Managing Director of leading loading and unloading equipment specialists Thorworld Industries Ltd.


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Thorworld Industries Ltd,
Station Lane Industrial Estate,
Old Whittington,
Derbyshire, S41 9QX.
Tel: 01246 260981.
Fax: 01246 260493.
Contact:  John Meale, Managing Director

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