Board Member

Guy Smith

Guy farms 350 hectares at St Osyth in Essex, mainly growing quality wheat. The farm is notable in that it is officially the driest spot in the British Isles, is mainly below sea level protected by two miles of sea defence walls, and adjoins areas of international environmental importance. The farm business is well diversified including agri-tourist attractions such as The Blue Garden Cafe.

Jonathan Regan

Jon’s background is in Information Technology in Financial services. Having started his career in the Lloyds Insurance market as an Aviation Broker, he moved into information technology and has been engaged in sales, product marketing and systems development. He has been responsible for bringing high technology products to market and also large scale system development and deployment.

Senior roles held in the City included Head of International Sales NCR Financial Services, Managing Director of IT Alexander Howden Ltd (Now Aon), Head of Sales and Marketing EMEA Bank of New York.

Robert Lowson

Robert Lowson is a former senior civil servant, working for MAFF and Defra. His posts included Minister in the UK Permanent Representation to the EU, Communications Director and Environment Strategy Director in Defra, and Senior Advisor with the European Environment Agency (EEA).

Professor Ian Puddephat

Ian Puddephat is a crop physiologist with a diverse interest in plant biology, crop breeding and agronomy. He is experienced in leading complex programmes, from discovery to commercial application, and has worked in both academia and industry. He built PepsiCo’s crop science R&D capability in support of the company’s portfolio transformation in their nutrition, beverage and snack foods businesses.

Steve Ellwood

Steve has spent his career in the food and farming sector and now has a number of non executive roles with UK based companies. These include businesses operating in fresh produce, poultry meat, large scale farm management and animal feed production. He is a graduate of Newcastle University and spent a number of years leading HSBC Bank's Agriculture Team. Outside of work he is a fell walker and keen cricket fan and commits a significant amount of time to charity and voluntary work.

John Elliot

John Elliot qualified as a chartered accountant in Oxford before attending agricultural college and returning to manage the family and estate business. He holds a number of non-executive roles.

Dr Helen Ferrier

Helen leads the National Farmers’ Union’s policy and advocacy work on agricultural and horticultural science and research, biotechnology, data, and food safety, on behalf of the NFU’s 55,000 members in England and Wales.

Based at NFU HQ in Warwickshire, she leads a policy team covering plant health and crop protection, farm safety, skills and training, transport, labour and employment.

Mr Richard Butler

Richard joined the family business of R J Butler & Son in 1975 and has been the senior partner since 1983, farming 1,700 acres near Marlborough, Wiltshire. Farm enterprises include a 300 cow holstein dairy herd, a beef cattle fattening unit, and an extensive arable combine crop enterprise specialising in wheat grown for seed and milling as well as malting barley production. Other combinable crops grown include oats, white beans and rapeseed.

Dr Charles Looker

Currently farming in Cambridgeshire, Charles graduated in agricultural science and spent eight years doing postgraduate and postdoctoral research on pulse crops, followed by 12 years helping to bring new varieties of combinable crops to the market. He has also worked for 15 years in information technology, bringing him into contact with a range of business areas including arable farming, retail, tax accountancy and the police.


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