Panel Discussion: Success in Food Service

About the event

At this interactive panel event, we will be learning from Adam Wells (Co-Founder of Belazu), Laura Copp (Co-Founder of Masafina), Deyvi Sidi-Sarfati (Head of Sales & Account Management of Julienne Bruno) and Alison Hester-Lloyd (Head of Operations and Buyer at Fooditude).

This panel will be chaired by Andy Allen (Food & Leadership Consultant, and Entrepreneur in Residence at Bidfood) and we will be discussing the vast and varied opportunities that the food service industry can offer to food businesses like yours.

About the event:

Did you know the food service sector is bigger than retail? It is set to continue growing and encompasses all the food consumed outside of home - think cafes, restaurants, pub chains, entertainment venues, transportation, universities and even hospitals.

This opens up a new world of opportunity for emerging food businesses - but you might not know how to get started, who to speak to first, or how to become ‘food service ready’ yet.

To help you understand food service better, we’ve put together a panel of food service experts, food founders and buyers to demystify the sector and talk about their own experiences of how they grew their businesses and secured sales using food service channels.

About our panellists:

Adam Wells is the co-founder of Belazu, a leading food manufacturer specialising in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern products. Beloved by chefs and consumers alike, Belazu has made waves in the food service sector, supplying Michelin-starred restaurants and catering groups, casual dining chains and gastro pubs as well as manufacturers and the travel sector with premium ingredients such as olives & nuts, pestos & culinary pastes, oils and vinegars.

Laura Copp is the co-founder of Masafina, a business that supplies a range of fresh, authentic Mexican products made with heirloom ingredients to restaurants across the UK. As the former Product Director at Belazu, Laura has forged strong relationships with chefs and food professionals from all over the world, and has extensive experience selling to a range of food service customers.

Deyvi Sidi-Sarfati is the Head of Sales & Account Management at JULIENNE BRUNO®, who create original products with a view to make plant-based the most exciting choice. JULIENNE BRUNO® currently makes a range of naturally-fermented, fresh, plant-based cheeses in London, and supplies into a range of restaurants, contract caterers, as well as providing their cheeses as ingredients for manufacturers to create dishes for casual dining chains and QSR.

Alison Hester-Llyod is the Head of Operations at contract caterer Fooditude, which offers a full service food experience for corporate offices. Alison has built her career in hospitality and has a broad knowledge of the industry ranging from restaurants, corporate events to contract catering, giving her a unique experience as to what products are the most desirable. She will be sharing her buying perspective when engaging with new food service suppliers.

Andy Allen is our panel chair. Andy is a consultant, mentor, and food service expert who understands the opportunities and challenges for smaller food brands entering food service. He is currently the entrepreneur in residence at Bidfood, leading the development of the Open Doors programme, which supports smaller food businesses to engage with the food service sector.

About these Q&As:

Join us for some lively discussion about the highs and lows of making it in the food business world.

At these talks, the UK's leading voices will be sharing their food business stories, and some of the valuable lessons they learned along the way.

This is an open session for aspiring food founders where we encourage participants to get involved, ask questions and apply ideas to their own projects and businesses.

Ticket includes post-Q&A networking drinks and samples from the speakers.

Please note that this is an in-person event.

Network Members: please use your NM code at checkout.

If you would like to attend, but the ticket price is any kind of barrier, please contact to receive a free ticket code. We hold back a limited set of tickets for this purpose.

Book tickets

Date and time

April 16, 2024 6:00 PM


Mission Kitchen

Ticket price

£15 (Free for Members)

Mission Kitchen Members Only