Gastronauts

Meet The Judges

Managing Director of The School of Artisan Food

Julie Byrne B.Ed. MBA MCMI

With over 35 years’ experience in Education, Julie worked in a number of colleges at a management and leadership level. In her previous role as Principal of Sheffield City College she led the construction of the iconic £60m Sheffield City College.

The state-of-the-art facilities are now established as the 'vocational heart of the City' and are ideally placed to continue to develop and deliver world class skills training and development for the city and the region.

Julie is passionate about education and training and the positive impact they have on the life chances of individuals. She is currently Manging Director at The School of Artisan Food, a value driven, unique, not for profit organisation and registered charity dedicated to teaching skills in artisan food production.

The School is on a mission to ensure that good, seasonal, locally sourced food, which is baked or cooked from scratch, is for everyone.

Located on the beautiful Welbeck Estate, The School offers a wide range of inspirational courses including: bread making, business and entrepreneurship, brewing, butchery and charcuterie, cheese, chocolate, ice cream making, preserves, patisserie and viennoiserie.

Julie is the Vice Chair of the North Notts Business Improvement District (BID) Strategic Board and is fully committed to improving and developing North Nottinghamshire as a place we are all proud to live and work in.

 

Home Economist and Food Demonstrator

Teresa Bovey

Teresa has been a professional home Economist for over 30 years. Her career began at East Midlands Gas and then for Philips Major Appliances (now Whirlpool) where she worked with multi-function and microwave ovens. Teresa ran a national cookery club, developed recipes, tested appliances and trained sales staff. After leaving Philips to have two children, she taught part-time in further education, continued with freelance writing, ran food safety and diet related courses.

She eventually became a Food Advisor for Sainsbury's and a Home Economist for Denby Potteries Visitor Centre, where she began organising cookery demonstrations and events. This led to Teresa setting up her own business to run cookery demonstrations from her home, at food festivals and she is now also involved with food styling, photography and videography.

Teresa combines sound and varied knowledge of her profession with the reasoned, practical approach of someone who has enjoyed many years of cooking both professionally and as a working mum.

A trademark of both her cookery demonstrations and her food writing is the time-saving hints and tips she offers to help busy people make delicious, healthy meals with minimum effort. Teresa also works with local government and Principia NHS to promote healthy eating and encourage cookery skills in children. Teresa is also currently working on her first book.

Head of Food & Nutrition, Worksop College

Mel Christodoulou

After graduating from Sheffield Hallam University, Mel’s first job was with Lincoln Christ Hospital School in Lincoln, one of the oldest educational establishments in the country, with roots dating back to 1090. Teaching Food & Nutrition at GCSE and A level, Mel was promoted to Assistant Head of Year, with a responsibility for Health Education. After a relocation to Mansfield Mel became the inaugural Head of Food & Nutrition at Worksop College, the region’s leading independent school. Responsible for opening the Food & Nutrition department, Mel’s partnership with Leith’s School of Food & Wine has seen the subject grow exponentially, with many students going on to study Nutrition at university, as well as join some of the finest kitchens in the country.

Mel’s approach to the preparation and execution of a beautiful dish is ‘thoughtful planning, good quality ingredients and plenty of practice. A dash of lemon juice can make all the difference to the final balance of flavours,” she says.

A fan of many different types of cuisine, Mel’s favourite would have to be Greek. ‘Strong and bold flavours along with a climate that’s conducive to amazing produce,” she says. ‘Some of the finest meals I’ve ever eaten have been in tiny family-run tavernas in Greek villages. A generation of cooks perfecting their art and passing family recipes through the ages. I love the authentic honesty of that style of cooking.”

UK Chairman of Cerealto Siro

Michael Harfleet

Michael has an extensive track record in the food sector in the United Kingdom and Europe, having started his commercial career with International subsidiaries of both General Mills and Sara Lee. During a 17 year period he held both Sales and Marketing positions, as well as a General Management role.

Michael established an import business supplying the top 6 UK Multiples with “farinaceous” products from manufacturers based in Europe. In 1997 this business was merged into Andutra one of the largest importers of fmcg products supplying the overall UK Market. Following an abortive attempt to acquire Andutra he set up Siro UK in partnership with Grupo Siro in Spain.

After several years working with various European and Australian manufacturers Siro UK was challenged to help establish a major presence in the UK exclusively working on the Internationalisation of Grupo Siro under the Cerealto banner.

Working with a small executive team Michael helped establish the “only for you” model working in a unique partnership with Brand Owners and a major UK Retailer.

The establishment of an advanced 30K square meter production facility for Cereal based products in the UK has been a major step for Cerealto Siro in Worksop. Michael has made a major contribution to the team and now with some pride represents the Company as corporate ambassador.

Cerealto Siro has an International track record of inclusive employment being one of the largest private employers of people with barriers to work in Spain. Michael has taken responsibility for trying to mirror this policy in the UK.

Michael has a very rusty level of French and an evolving level of Spanish. Michael has eight children and a growing number of grandchildren. His interests outside of business involve Golf, Music and Wine; a great combination!

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