Sylvia Jay was the Director General of the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) from January 2001 until August 2005. The post involved working closely with the farming, retail and food service sectors. Before taking on the FDF post, Sylvia Jay resigned from the Civil Service to accompany her husband on his appointment as Her Majesty's Ambassador in Paris. She worked closely with specialist food manufacturers either directly or via Food from Britain (FFB).
She has been a member of Food from Britain's Council since March 2003, and is a member of the Donald Curry Group overseeing implementation of the Government's Sustainable Food and Farming Sector Strategy.
- Vice Chair L'Oreal UK appointed 2005
- President of Food from Britain
- Director of Saint Gobain and Lazard Limited, appointed 2001
- President of the Pilgrim Trust
- Director of Prison Reform Trust
- Director of l'Entente Cordiale Scholarships Scheme.
Previous career in British civil service included
- secondments to the French Ministry of International Cooperation and the French Treasury
- secondment to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
- post at Department for International Development.
- post at Overseas Development Administration (ODA)
- Contributed to the foundation of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development(ERDC)