Our vision and mission

Our vision is a sustainable food system which delivers health and wellbeing for all.

Our mission is changing food policy and business practice to ensure everyone, across our nations, can afford and access a healthy diet.

What we do: We use surprising and inventive ideas to catalyse and deliver fundamental change in the food system by building and synthesising strong evidence, shaping powerful coalitions, harnessing citizens’ voices and driving progress with impactful communications. We continually identify new opportunities for action, and trial new levers for change.

Who we are: We are a registered charity working in partnership with researchers, campaigners, community bodies, industry, government and citizens to galvanise the UK’s diverse agents of change.

Our Team

Anna Taylor

Anna Taylor

Anna joined the Food Foundation as its first Executive Director at the beginning of June 2015 after 5 years at the Department for International Development.  At DFID Anna led the policy team on nutrition and supported the delivery of the UK’s global commitments to tackle undernutrition.

Before joining DFID Anna worked for a number of international organisations including Save the Children and UNICEF and has been at the forefront of international leadership on nutrition for several years and supporting programmes in a wide range of contexts in Africa and South Asia.   Anna has also worked for the UK Department of Health. In 2014 she was awarded an OBE for her work to address the global burden of undernutrition.  She did a MSc in Human Nutrition at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in 1994.  In May 2017 Anna became a member of the London Food Board to advise the Mayor of London and the GLA on the food matters that affect Londoners. She is a Board member for the Emergency Nutrition Network,   the International Food Policy Research Institute based in Washington DC, Veg Power and Biteback 2030.  She is currently serving as Chief Independent Adviser to Henry Dimbleby for the development of the National Food Strategy.

Dr Courtney Scott (RD, MPH, PhD)

Dr Courtney Scott (RD, MPH, PhD)

Courtney is a food and nutrition policy expert, who joined the Food Foundation as Research and Policy Advisor in 2017. Prior to joining the Foundation, she was PhD student and Research Fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.  She previously worked on nutrition policy advocacy in the US for Public Health Advocates, focusing on sugary drink policies, and international non-communicable disease advocacy in Brussels for the International Diabetes Federation and the NCD Alliance.  Courtney is a Registered Dietitian (United States) and earned her masters in public health nutrition from the University of California- Berkeley.  She is an unabashed vegetable enthusiast, a part-time crusader for recycling and reduced plastic use, and her California roots show often.

Jo Ralling

Jo Ralling

Jo joined the Food Foundation as Head of Communications in April 2018.  Jo is passionate Media & Campaigns Executive specialising consumer health and public advocacy campaigns with over 20 years experience working across all areas of Broadcast, Digital and Print Media.

In the past 11 years Jo has held leadership positions in the Jamie Oliver Group driving growth for the media group, overseeing all television production and distribution of over 300 hours of programming, creating the global digital strategy and setting up the hugely successful Multi Channel Network Food and Drinks Tube.  She launched the SUGAR SMART campaign for the Jamie Oliver Food Foundation and played a pivotal role in delivering the UK and global advocacy campaign to raise awareness of the dangers of Sugar to long term public health and lobbying the Government to urgently introduce a Childhood Obesity Strategy and Sugar Tax.

In October 2017 Jo launched RISING TIDE FILMS an Independent Production Company based in Brighton and set up the BRIGHTON PRODUCTION HUB to connect production talent and broadcasters across the city. ​


Laura Sandys

Laura Sandys

Laura Sandys is an innovator who seeks to challenge incumbent thinking in public policy and business in order to increase competition, productivity and creativity. She set up the Food Foundation as an independent policy think-tank to explore the changing challenges facing UK and international food systems.

In both politics, as MP for South Thanet, and the corporate world, as the founder of two companies in the energy and environment fields and now CEO of Challenging Ideas, Laura has campaigned for changes in food security, together with resource management and energy markets as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Energy Minister. Described by The Times as ‘one of the sanest of all MPs’ and by ConservativeHome as ‘lateral-minded, original and free-thinking’, she has brought her political and business experience to calls for innovation in food systems policy.

Rosie Boycott

Rosie Boycott

Rosie was appointed Chair of London Food by the Mayor to help improve Londoners’ access to healthy, locally produced and affordable food.  Rosie has been editor of the Daily Express, Esquire and the Independent. She developed Capital Growth which was launched last year by the Mayor, to boost “grow your own” by creating 2012 community food growing spaces by 2012. The scheme, managed by London Food Link, now has hundreds of spaces being cultivated in a diverse range of places including canal banks, schools, roofs, private gardens open to the community and parks. The programme was awarded a Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Commendation last year for its success in getting communities growing and has launched a competition to encourage primary age pupils to grow food in their school grounds. She writes and speaks regularly about the importance of food in improving health and in reducing the carbon emissions, which cause climate change.

Professor Sir Charles Godfray CBE

Professor Sir Charles Godfray CBE

Professor Sir Charles Godfray CBE is Hope Professor at Oxford University and Director of the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food.  He has been at Oxford since 2006 and was previously Head of Biology and director of the NERC Centre for Population Biology at Imperial College London where he remains a visiting professor.  He chaired the Lead Expert Group of the UK Government’s Foresight Project on the Future of Food and Farming and is a member of the strategy advisory board of the UK Global Food Security Programme and the steering group of the UK Government Green Food Project.

Expert Advisors

Corinna Hawkes

Corinna Hawkes

Corinna is the incoming Professor of Food Policy at the Centre for Food Policy, City University London. She is a specialist in food policy, food systems, diet and health who’s work involves research, advocacy, and advising governments and international agencies. She has worked for the World Health Organization, the International Food Policy Research Institute, the School of Public Health at the University of Sao Paulo and New York University. Between 2012 and 2015 she was Head of Policy and Public Affairs at World Cancer Research Fund International. Her research interests focus on the impact of food systems and food policies on diet, nutrition and non-communicable diseases. She has published widely in academic journals, policy briefs and reports on topics such as food systems globalization; the links between agricultural policy, trade and nutrition; policies and regulations to encourage healthier diets. Corinna participates in the World Health Organization’s Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity.

Emma Coles

Emma Coles

Emma is a co-founder and partner of Food Smart Advisors, a boutique consultancy working on solutions for a healthier world. In addition, Emma is working with Voeding Leeft, a Dutch NGO that develops innovative food programs including a program to use lifestyle changes to reverse type 2 diabetes.

Previously Emma was head of Sustainable Retailing at Albert Heijn, the largest supermarket in the Netherlands and part of the Ahold Delhaize group. Emma was responsible for health and sustainability and is interested in the link between diet and health and the opportunities for the food retail industry to support consumer health.  While at Ahold Emma was co-chair of the Consumer Goods Forum Health and Wellness pillar.

Before joining Ahold Emma was Director of the Health Insurance Fund, a foundation supporting low-cost health insurance delivered through the private sector in sub-Saharan Africa. 

Three years running Emma has been included in the Dutch Food100 list.  100 people changing the food system in the Netherlands.  Emma is a member of the Tuft’s Nutrition Council.

Harry Rutter

Harry Rutter

Harry is a public health physician based in Oxford. He is a senior clinical research fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, a senior strategic adviser to Public Health England, an honorary senior clinical lecturer at the University of Oxford, and an adjunct professor of public health at both University College Cork, Ireland, and the Sogn og Fjordane University College, Norway. He was the founder director of the National Obesity Observatory for England and led the development of the National Child Measurement Programme childhood obesity surveillance system.  Harry was a founder member of the steering committee of the European Health Enhancing Physical Activity network.  He has a broad interest in the evaluation of public health approaches and interventions within complex systems and the development of tools to support evidence-based public health policy and actions.

How are we funded

The Nuffield Foundation is an endowed charitable trust that aims to improve social well-being in the widest sense. It funds research and innovation in education and social policy and also works to build capacity in education, science and social science research. The Nuffield Foundation has funded this project, but the views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the Foundation. More information is available at

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation aims to improve the quality of life for people and communities throughout the UK both now and in the future. We do this by funding the charitable work of organisations with the ideas and ability to achieve positive change.

The Department for International Development (DFID) leads the UK’s work to end extreme poverty. We are tackling the global challenges of our time including poverty and disease, mass migration, insecurity and conflict. Our work is building a safer, healthier, more prosperous world for people in developing countries and in the UK too.

Wellcome exists to improve health by helping great ideas to thrive. We support researchers, we take on big health challenges, we campaign for better science, and we help everyone get involved with science and health research. We are a politically and financially independent foundation.

The Tudor Trust is
an independent charitable trust which supports work which tries to meet the many different needs of people at the margins of our society.

Trust for London is an independent charitable foundation. We aim to tackle poverty and inequality in London and we do this by: funding voluntary and charity groups – currently we make grants totalling around £10 million a year and at any one time we are supporting up to 300 organisations; funding independent research; and providing knowledge and expertise on London’s social issues to policymakers and journalists.

The Health Foundation is an independent charity committed to bringing about better health and health care for people in the UK

A legacy of philanthropy rooted in the pioneering vision of Jamsetji Tata, the Founder of the Tata group, that has enriched India and its people for more than 100 years.

The Rank Foundation aim is to improve the lives of people and their communities, across the UK. We look to do this by encouraging and developing leadership and promoting enterprise and innovation.
The Rank Foundation supports a number of small and major programmes across the UK. In the majority of cases, these programmes are funded through our proactive, research driven activities.

The National Lottery Community Fund is proud to award money raised by National Lottery players.

We are very grateful to our current funders, the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and the Nuffield Foundation; and to the New Venture Fund and Benenden for their previous support.

We only accept support that does not compromise our independence.

About Our Funders

The Food Foundation reviews all financial engagements – assessing whether potential donations are acceptable and in line with the Foundation’s aims. From January 2016, the Food Foundation adopted the Financial Relationship Policy developed by World Obesity Federation. The Food Foundation adapted the strategy so that its language was consistent with the Foundation’s internal structure. The financial thresholds for low, medium and high risk engagements were also lowered, in recognition of the size and operating budget of the Food Foundation. The Food Foundation’s assessment protocol can be found here. Summaries of all Policy Alignment Assessments will be published here for transparency. The Food Foundation’s financial engagement strategy will be reviewed on a regular basis.

Our Supporters

We are supported by some very generous organisations who provide pro bono support and core facilities

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