Hello, we are thefoodpeople!

thefoodpeople are united in their passion, love and natural curiosity for food, trend spotting, travel and adventure.

We are a expert team of food trend spotters and ideators. Our team hails from all sectors of the food and drink industry. We are innovators, chefs and marketers. We are brand specialists and food researchers. We are food developers, anthropologists, psychologist , product illustrators, food writers and more. Most of all we are all foodies with a true passion for food and drink.

Established since 2004, thefoodpeople have expertise in global food and drink trend spotting, reporting and predicting as well as experiential ideation services.

As a business we live and breathe food & drink trends and thrive on creating market-leading concepts and ideas that inspire and excite you and your customers. We are thefoodpeople.

Charles' food journey

Charles from thefoodpeople

A fourth generation foodie, cooking at his mother's side in the kitchen is where Charles' passion for food began. Hours spent training as a chef led to him winning the title of Junior Chef of the Year. From there, he went to France to learn more, before returning home to take a degree in catering and business.

From high-street restaurants, he moved into new product development at Saxby’s. By the time he left for Grampian, Charles was head of this department, a role in which he would continue, working with, among others, Sainsbury’s. There he met Wayne and the seeds for thefoodpeople were sown. Charles co-founded thefoodpeople with Wayne in 2004.

“The reason that thefoodpeople exists is because we’ve been in your shoes. We know what it’s like; we know it’s not easy generating ideas and identifying trends.”

Wayne's food journey

Wayne from thefoodpeople

Wayne’s journey started at his mother’s side, stirring at the kitchen table. Catering college followed and it wasn’t long before he was working for Raymond Blanc at Michelin-starred Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons. Next came teaching French cookery and running his own outside catering company.

After working in food retailing at Harrods, Wayne spent a number of years developing and managing businesses in the food manufacturing industry. At Grampian, he met Charles. A friendship began and, out of a shared passion, a new business was born: thefoodpeople.

“thefoodpeople have a passion for food. We understand food and have a hands-on knowledge of the food industry. We help our clients find the innovation that makes profit.”

Sarah's food journey

Sarah from thefoodpeople

Sarah was invited to join thefoodpeople in the planning stages of the company to draw on her long career in the food industry.
After a formal classic French chef training and a stint working in Europe, Sarah then worked for the Brassart family as a chef instructor at L'ecole de Cuisine Francaise.
After that she set up a catering company in London cooking for high end parties and fundraisers. Next was a move to food development as a consultant to Burberry, in London.
Sarah has always been a keen writer and fascinated by the history, origins and meanings of food and encompasses this in her role as Director of Trends.

“Trends move so fast: as director of trends, it is my responsibility to provide the first piece of the puzzle, to inform and to inspire.”

Abbey's food journey

Abbey from thefoodpeople

Abbey has always been a keen cook but initially pursued studying to be an artist. On deciding that art school was not for her, she packed herself off to South America and then worked on a vegetable farm here in the UK as a “marrow lady”. Yes, really.

Throughout this time there had been many bouts of ill health due to an underlying medical condition – and after using food to make herself better, she finally decided to embark on a university course at the grand old age of 22, graduating 4 years later as a Registered Dietitian from King’s College London.

Knowing that clinical work was not for her, Abbey was thrilled to start working at The Food People, combining her creativity with her love of food and good nutrition.

In her spare time, Abbey maintains a blog about her health as well as her cooking adventures, and writes patient-perspective pieces for a charity magazine. Her pet peeve is nutritional nonsense, and she is on a mission to get the nation nutrition-savvy. Contrary to popular assumption, Abbey hates a salad and would much rather sit down to a curry or a roast dinner.

Alison's food journey

Alison from thefoodpeople

Alison’s passion for food was inherited from her late mother, Marjorie, who would often have her small daughter by her side in the kitchen of the family’s country hotel outside Edinburgh.
Due to her mixed heritage and an enduring quest for adventure, Alison has lived in the UK, Canada and Italy and now calls Sydney Australia her home.
Alison is a “people and food person” and her keen eye for fashion trends drew her to Italy at a young age. Alison was immediately captivated by the variety of the regional cuisine in Italy and unable to tear herself away, she stayed and spent 6 years running a restaurant in a seaside resort. During this time Alison’s appreciation of seasonally based ingredients and simple preparation was cemented. She later brought this concept back to Australia and applied it to the three “trattoria” restaurants which she successfully opened and operated in Sydney.
Alison has a diploma in Fashion Design, a Certificate in Business Management and somewhere in there is an Arts/Law degree.

Amy's food journey

Amy from thefoodpeople

Amy studied Hotel and Catering Management at university but rather than end up in the world of hotels, she found her way to the Catering graduate scheme at British Airways. It was here that she was really introduced to the foodie world by working with top chefs and a serious food enthusiast who helped to ignite the foodie flame in her and kept her on top of all food trends. Having worked across Club World, First Class and Concorde, Amy was ready for a new challenge and moved to work as a product developer at Sainsbury's, working across various departments. Now Amy is bringing her foodie flame and product developers experience to thefoodpeople.

Charlotte's food journey

Charlotte from thefoodpeople

Charlotte was brought up in the kitchen, trained by her Mother, a trained chef. From a young age Charlotte could be found experimenting in the kitchen, and her love of cooking led her to enter cooking competitions (and she even won a few!). Raised with a whisk in one hand and a pen in the other, following school Charlotte pursued her love of the written word and returned to her native home of Jersey, where worked in business development and marketing for a start up electronics company. She later returned to the UK, working at an add-on value food company, where she remained for 4 years, becoming part of their innovation development team. It was here that she rediscovered her love for food and experimenting in the kitchen! Now working for thefoodpeople, she gets to spend her days mixing her love of food with her love of writing, and she couldn’t be happier!

Emma's food journey

Emma from thefoodpeople

Emma's food journey started early, she can't remember a time when she wasn't reading about, cooking or eating good food! At school she won several awards for her cooking which led to catering college with stints in the kitchens of Raymond Blanc at Michelin-starred Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons, The Savoy and The Carved Angel in Dartmouth. From there Emma went to work for Sainsbury's where she travelled the world researching food trends and literally eating her way through countries! Emma's role at thefoodpeople is as part of the foodwatching team researching global food trends.

Fiona's food journey

Fiona from thefoodpeople

Fiona’s food journey started from a young age. Having grown up on a mixed arable and livestock farm in Lincolnshire, she has always had a deep routed passion for food. Her fascination and intrigue stemmed from her grandmother’s culinary encouragement. From growing her own fresh seasonal veggies to cooking up arguably the best meals in Lincolnshire, these ideal starting ingredients looked destined to bring Fiona a career in the food industry.

With her taste buds then tantalised by travel, Fiona was soon presented with the opportunity to experience exotic cuisines and flavours from around the world. This stirred up her curiosity around both food and people, the perfect recipe for obtaining a degree in Food and Consumer Studies at Harper Adams University.

Roles within innovation, marketing and executive search on both sides of the globe followed, which gave Fiona a firm understanding of the UK food industry and the challenges that it can bring.

As Business Developer and now an integral part of thefoodpeople family, Fiona is delighted to be working with a dynamic range of innovative foodie businesses.

Graham's food journey

Graham from thefoodpeople

Graham was adopted by thefoodpeople in 2007 to help with all things ICT related.
Graham's skills in technology began at the tender age of 7 when he was discovered on the kitchen floor with his mother's toaster in several pieces.
Graham loves food and always enjoys cooking for his family and friends, however he leaves the baking to his wife whose cupcakes are simply to die for! To burn off all the calories Graham enjoys climbing and walking and has travelled as far as the Himalayas in pursuit of a memorable mountain view.

Jenny's food journey

Jenny from thefoodpeople

Raised in an agricultural community, Jenny grew up in a world of fresh and seasonal food and home-cooked meals. Her first job was for Tinsley Foods, developing vegetable ready meals and sandwiches for Marks & Spencer. From there, she moved to Smedley’s, where she developed salads for the likes of Sainsbury's, Asda and Boots.

Next she joined Bakkavor where, as an NPD Manager, she helped establish a factory that supplied chilled ready meals to Waitrose. As R&D Manager, she met thefoodpeople and she has been writing for foodwatching and contributing to many more of our services since 2006.

Joanne's food journey

Joanne from thefoodpeople

Joanne's background is hotels - growing up in her parents seaside hotel and starting to work there from the age of 17, eventually taking it over. Now years later she has passed on that mantle and was looking forward to lazy days. But! having known Sarah for years Joanne was persuaded to come and run the office using her honed customer service skills to look after all our online subscribers!

John's food journey

John from thefoodpeople

John's love for food started initially with his love of eating. Quickly mastering this he moved on to the cooking bit.

After studying illustration and design at art school he naturally became a chef.

Moving back into the design world, over the next twenty years he built a reputation as an innovative and creative designer in all areas of print media, specialising in brand development, packaging design and advertising. Combining both his passion for food and his evangelical enthusiasm for great aesthetic and functional design, working with the Food People has proved to be his dream job.

As our illustrator it falls to John to add a visual twist to innovation workshops and the ideation capture process.

Kate's food journey

Kate from thefoodpeople

A classically trained chef, Kate has worked in, around or near food for her entire life. As a teenager, Kate spent her weekend and evenings working in her parent’s pub, before studying Hotel & Catering at College to work in conference & banqueting.

Kate moved to Jersey when she got married and raised two children. In 1996 they all moved back to the UK, where Kate continued her work in the world of food and ran a local business, before then running the kitchen at a local delicatessen.

Kate worked in sales for a large food corporation, before becoming a development chef for a local company. Here she worked for over a decade, gaining valuable food development and innovation experience and most importantly, food trend expertise! Her irreversible passion for food has always driven Kate to search for the ‘next big thing’. An avid cook, she is never far from a cookery book, or two.

Kateline's food journey

Kateline from thefoodpeople

Growing up cooking with her mother, Kateline could only imagine a life centred around food and cooking. Studying a food science degree lead to Sainsbury’s where she developed ranges across fresh foods.

Starting a food blog reviewing new London restaurants and her own recipe exploits kept her up to date with all things foodie. Sticking to the kitchen, she began catering events from dinner parties to weddings and started a teaching cooking and baking classes.

Kateline’s career has taken her from the frontline of Michelin starred kitchens to global food service and back behind the scenes to see how food reaches our plates – as long as it’s about food she’s happy!

Kirsty's food journey

Kirsty from thefoodpeople

From tuna and mayo sandwiches at picnics with Mum to the more recent Michelin starred meals with her equally very foodie partner, some of Kirsty's fondest memories are of those with food. Kirsty began her foodie journey whilst at school, always cooking for her family and bringing home meals from her catering class. it was then she knew that the culinary path was for her. She studied catering and hospitality for three years at college before taking a gap year where she then began working in restaurants, hotels and even headed up the day-to-day running of a Sussex wholesale bakery. She then went to study a BA (Hons) degree in Food and Culinary Arts at University of Brighton studying anything from gastronomy to food history and has most recently been working for a specialist cookware retailer as an online coordinator and email marketer and loves nothing more than sharing all her foodie adventures with her colleagues.

Morgan's food journey

Morgan from thefoodpeople

Morgan was educated as a scholar at Broadwater Manor School and Brighton College, before attending St. Peter's College, Oxford with a Choral Scholarship to read for a BA in Music. Upon completion of his degree, Morgan moved to London in order to read for an MA in the Cultural and Creative Industries at King's College, University of London.
Thoughout his years of study, Morgan developed a deep-seated and insatiable love of culture, with a particular personal passion for food. Having been a vegetarian since a teenager, Morgan has always been keen to explore and adapt elements of global cuisines to practise cooking at home.
Having worked variously in consultancy, marketing and PR, Morgan worked as Managing Director for an international education company before starting his current role as Business Development Manager with thefoodpeople in 2015.

Olivia's food journey

Olivia from thefoodpeople

With chef parents Olivia's foodie upbringing meant she didn't stand a chance working in anything other than food, although she tried, studying Psychology to Masters level, but the draw of a foodie career proved too much and throughout her time at University Olivia poured her love of baking into writing a gluten free baking blog - Olivia was diagnosed Coeliac aged 10, missed cake so started baking!

Taking a break from studying Olivia travelled around S.E Asia, Australia and New Zealand and caught the travel bug! She is now back in London, revelling in the vibrant London foodie scene.

Shokofeh's food journey

Shokofeh from thefoodpeople

Shokofeh (or ‘Shak’ to her friends) had a rather unconventional food journey… She was a corporate lawyer in her previous life, before she decided to leave the City to attend culinary school (and pursue her lifelong passion for food, full-time). Upon completion of chef training, Shokofeh spent several years working across the food and drink industry – in addition to working as a chef in various London kitchens, she also worked as a freelance food writer, stylist, recipe developer and restaurant consultant. Her last role, before joining thefoodpeople, was at Marks & Spencer – where she worked as a recipe development chef, in their in-house kitchen development team.

Shak hung up her chef whites in 2017, to join thefoodpeople team as Senior Trend Analyst. But in her spare time, when she’s not busy reporting on food, drink and health trends(!), she can usually still be found cooking up a storm in the kitchen… and when she’s not in the kitchen, chances are she’s working her way through the menu in a restaurant somewhere!

Sophie's food journey

Sophie from thefoodpeople

Half Sicilian as well as English, an obsession with food runs through Sophie’s veins. Raised on pasta and risotto, she would always be helping out in the kitchen, as well as being the family’s most fervent fan of her mother’s cooking.

Her love for food is matched by one for the written word, having studied literature at Oxford and originally trained in journalism, before moving into marketing and advertising. During her five years in a London advertising agency, Sophie handled a range of FMGC accounts – from Coca-Cola to United Biscuits.

During this period, she also wrote about food in her spare time. It was in a restaurant in California that she finally decided to marry up her passions and follow a course in food writing as a career. She now lives between Barcelona and London working for thefoodpeople – and taking full advantage of everything these culinary hotspots have to offer.

Tom's food journey

Tom from thefoodpeople

Coming from a sporting background, Tom has always had a close affinity with food - being that he has always eaten a lot of it! His personal cooking traits were honed in the early days at school where he reveled in after school cookery classes at 'Piglet's Pantry' before becoming a bit more food-savvy after moving to France at the age of 18 to pursue a professional sporting dream of road cycling.

Now living in London, Tom enjoys exploring new hangouts be it sipping coffee, devouring cake or testing the latest street food on offer!

Scott's food journey

Scott from thefoodpeople

After studying Zoology at Aberdeen, Scott started his professional food journey, in a small restaurant in Sydney. He was immediately fascinated by the science, art and biology of cooking.

He came back to his native Edinburgh and dove into professional cookery and was lucky enough to cook all over the world at restaurants like the Three Chimneys in Skye and Vue De Monde in Melbourne.

After restaurants, Scott went into product development for a fish company, designing products for M&S. During this time, he went back to university to study an MSc in Gastronomy at Queen Margaret University.

Roll on 20(ish) years and since his first day at the stove and Scott’s fascination for food still as strong as it ever was. Now with thefoodpeople, it is his words rather than his knives that do the talking.

Sarah Weston's food journey

Sarah Weston from thefoodpeople

Sarah’s love of food began by her grandmother’s side baking and spending many an hour picking (and eating) peas, strawberries and mint from the garden.

After completing an English degree she travelled the world for a year creating many food and people memories. From chilli on everything with Zimbabwean friends to freshly caught sea urchin and pasta in Italy food makes adventures even more memorable.

Upon returning to the UK Sarah began her career in marketing at Boots the Chemist where she worked on cosmetics but it wasn’t long before her love of food meant a move to Campbell’s soup followed by Aunt Bessie’s and Dr.Oetker. Sarah worked with retailers to develop category partnerships and by the time she left Dr.Oetker was Head of Category for Home Baking.

At thefoodpeople Sarah is part of the categorywatching team and gets to combine her love of food with writing and looking for future trends.

Ryan's food journey

Ryan from thefoodpeople

Born into a family of home bakers, Ryan was usually at his Granny’s side baking scones, breads and cakes, and was always protective, according to his mum, of every single ingredient in case it fell into the hands of his wee sister Nichole.
Food was always a hobby rather than a career for Belfast-born Ryan, until a job as a fishmonger, and then as a chef in a Thai restaurant sparked the realisation that food should dominate his days.
Undergraduate and Postgraduate academic studies nearly got in the way, and after juggling food marketing jobs and catering, Ryan took the plunge and trained as a pastry chef, leading to jobs in restaurants, food styling, photography, events and restaurant catering, and a brief spell in Bilbao, working with some great brands, innovative companies and exciting chefs.
Ryan now writes about food all day for thefoodpeople, but also keeps the creative culinary flag flying by making his own bean-to-bar chocolate in his spare time.

Lizzie's food journey

Lizzie from thefoodpeople

I have grown up loving food, apparently the only reason I cried as a baby was to get more food! When a teacher at school told me I could go and study food as a degree at university, all of my dreams had come true! First I went off to Australia where I had spent some of my childhood growing up, to spend a year exploring and working in various hospitality jobs, but also on a Mandarin farm packing them in boxes, learning all about quality control.
As part of my degree in Food and Human Nutrition I took a placement year to work with Samworth Brothers as a Product Developer, down in beautiful Cornwall, developing pies and pasties (yes I did put on about a stone…!). I also went out to the Philippines for a month to volunteer on a nutrition project cooking for malnourished children and teaching the community about nutrition and health.

I completed my degree and went off to Central America for a bit more exploring of the world and stayed on a chocolate farm for a bit, learning how to make chocolate from scratch using the old techniques of grinding the bean on stone.

I have since worked in food innovation teams, working first for a small start-up consultancy developing new menus and opening restaurants. Then moving on to work for Tesco in their internal innovation team, writing their internal food trends book, running food safaris and workshops, working alongside the product development team.

Throughout all of my career in the food industry I have come across the Food People, either their trend book or the reports and loved their style and knew how respected they are in the food industry. When a job came up I jumped on it and haven’t looked back since!