Ice-cream firm chairman who played major roles in farming, food manufacture, politics and education.
MAITLAND Mackie, the patriarch of the Scottish ice cream dynasty, has died after a short illness.
He was diagnosed with a form of lymphoma brain tumour in March, just two weeks after the death of his wife Halldis. According to his family: “He endured both with his characteristic strength and humour.”
Mackie was a dairy farmer who discovered his entrepreneurial streak in the 1980s. A tireless proponent of alternative energy, he supported charities, was actively involved with education and the NFU Scotland and stood for the Liberal Democrats against Alex Salmond in Banff and Buchan in 1999.
Mackie’s Ice Cream began in a corner of the milking parlour in 1986, when the rising popularity of semi-skimmed milk led to a surplus of cream. It remained a family concern to the end, with Maitland the company chairman, his son Mac the managing director and daughters Karin (marketing director) and Kirstin (development director) carrying on the tradition.
In 2009 Mackie’s joined with the Taylor family to develop Mackie’s Crisps. George Taylor, managing director of Mackie’s at Taypack said: “Maitland was a larger-than-life character who was not driven by profit but by improving the way things were done.”
People often said that once they had met Mackie, they never forgot him. Karin Hayhow described her father as: “a man with incredible mental and physical energy – with great appetite for life and people, a direct and engaging character.”
He combined, she added: “imagination with intelligence, which fed his ability to direct his business with a willingness to meet change and take risks. His business mantra was: no change, no chance.”
Her father was also: “a practical man at home and work, a many-sided business and family man. He was a great husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and became patriarch of our very large extended Mackie family.
“And handsome! We were very lucky to have him as our father.”