TECHNICAL ADVISORY PANEL  

Cotswold Taste’s Technical Advisory Panel has been set up to offer a ‘one-stop shop’ solution for Cotswold Taste members wanting technical services, and to help co-ordinate the activities and efforts of the business partners of Cotswold Taste.  
 
The Panel’s members bring a wealth of expertise and experience to the organisation.  
 
The key technical service areas in which the Technical Advisory Panel provides advice, support and guidance are: 
 
Technical accreditation and compliance 
Policy and Legislation 
Supply chain networks 
Food safety and hygiene (practical) 
Traceability and provenance 
Technological advances 
Food fraud 
Food waste 
 
If the Panel cannot directly provide support in relation to queries or requests, it will seek to refer enquiries to an industry expert business partner, organisation or consultancy who can help. 

TECHNICAL ADVISORY PANEL MEMBERS 

 

NICHOLAS WALOFF Director, Waloff Associates & Interim Chair 

Nicholas brings a wealth of experience in the business sector. He lives in Lechlade, Gloucestershire, is a Director of Three Counties Food & Drink Co Ltd, and is also the Business Development Director of The Brilliant Beer Company. 
 
His career has spanned 4 decades in both the UK and North America, encompassing the housing and property sectors; heritage and archaeology; food and drink; and Parliamentary relations.  
 
He describes himself simply as a ‘market maker’. 
 

MARIANE HODGKINSON Director, Twyning Consultancy 

Mariane is a food consultant at Twyning Consultancy (twyningconsultancy.co.uk) using knowledge, systems and common sense to achieve the best safety and hygiene standards in the food and drinks industry.  
 
A member of IFST, EHEDG and passionate about hygienic design, she supports companies in improving its operations and product safety culture. 
 

DR. RICHARD BAINES Senior Academic, Royal Agricultural University 

Richard’s research, consultancy and teaching interests encompass two converging themes: agricultural and rural development with special reference to emerging economies; and the management of food safety and quality for agricultural production in response to legislation, the food chain and consumers. 
 
In addition to his post at the Royal Agricultural College, Richard is also the Director and Owner of Agri-Business & Community Development Ltd. 
 

DR. JERED BOLTON Managing Director, Free My Menu & Not Just Code 

Jered is the co-founder of Free My Menu (freemymenu.com) and Not Just Code (notjustcode.co.uk), providing business development, requirements capture, business insight, process analysis, project management, process development and software development. 
 
His specialisms cover a host of subjects including software development, web applications, interface design, database architecture, embedded software, presentations and public speaking. 
 

LAURA BLAIR Director, Flair Food Consulting 

Laura is an experienced food scientist, with multi-sector experience across both manufacturing and retail businesses. 
 
Currently running her own food safety and technical consultancy company, Flair Food Consulting, Laura lives in Winchcombe, Cheltenham. 
 
As a member of the IFST Register of Professional Food Auditors and Mentors, Laura specialises in delivering bespoke food safety solutions and technical consultancy, implementing tailor-made Quality Management and HACCP systems, auditing, training and mentoring packages. 
 

TIM O'ROURKE Managing Director, The Brilliant Beer Company 

An internationally-renowned master brewer with more than 40 years’ experience, Tim’s business, The Brilliant Beer Company (brilliantbeer.com), delivers global training, consultancy and advisory services for all levels of brewing and distilling.  
 
Tim also set up The Beer Academy in 2002 to promote consumer awareness of the opportunities to match beer and food. 

COMMUNICATIONS ADVISORY PANEL 

Cotswold Taste’s Communications Advisory Panel has been set up for Cotswold Taste members wanting advice and assistance with communications of all kinds, and to help co-ordinate the activities and efforts of the business partners of Cotswold Taste. 
 
The Panel’s members have many years' experience in communications, marketing, copywriting and promotional work. 
 
The key technical service areas in which the Communications Advisory Panel provides advice, support and guidance are: 
 
Conventional media relations 
Social Media relations 
Website, including the Online Member Directory and Member Forum 
Publications and newletters/e-zines, including copyright issues 
Printing 
Stakeholder relations (financial and non-financial entities) 
Logo use by members 
 
If the Panel cannot directly provide support in relation to queries or requests, it will seek to refer enquiries to an industry expert business partner, organisation or consultancy who can help. 

COMMUNICATIONS ADVISORY PANEL MEMBERS 

 

NICOLA HARDY Joint Chair 

Trained at the Financial Times Business Information Service, Nicola has over 25 years' experience of researching food/drink/retail markets in the UK and overseas, providing competitive, customer and distributor intelligence and information.  
 
She is a member of the Market Research Society and an affiliate member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing. 
 

CAROLINE TOPPING Joint Chair 

Caroline lives in Cheltenham and her background is in sales and marketing with experience working with global brands both on the agency and client side.  
 
She has her own company, Gap Sales & Marketing, which works to open doors for businesses by finding new opportunities and providing targeted marketing, particularly through telemarketing. 
 

SUE BRADLEY Journalist 

Sue Bradley has been actively writing about Gloucestershire food and drink since 2003.  
 
She contributes features about food, farming, gardening and wildlife to a range of local, regional and national publications.  
 
She is also a member of the Guild of Food Writers. 
 

CHRIS LEIBBRANDT Marketing Consultant 

Chris is a highly experienced Marketing Consultant who runs his own specialist company Charismatic Marketing, and lives in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire.  
 
A world-class fisherman, he is a regularly contributes to several magazines, in particular the international trade magazine ‘Tackle Trade World’, and is also the Editor of CAMRA Gloucestershire’s magazine ‘The Tippler’. 
For more information on our Advisory Panels and their activities, please get in touch with Nick Waloff via the contact details below... 
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