Board and Leadership team

AHDB board

The AHDB Board consists of ten members - the chairs for each of the six sector advisory boards and three independent members - and the Chair. Their appointments are for varying periods of up to four years. Selection and appointment of the members of the board is carried out by Defra under the rules of the Office for the Commissioner of Public Appointments (OCPA).

Image of staff member Nicholas Saphir

AHDB Chair - Nicholas Saphir

Nicholas was appointed as chair of AHDB in April 2020. He has a wide background in agriculture and horticulture, having built a public company, farming, processing and trading fruit and vegetables in the UK, Europe, southern Africa and South America. His dairy experience includes a period as a non-executive director of Dairy Crest leading up to its flotation and spending the last 18 years building the Organic Milk Producers' Cooperative (Omsco) into the world’s second largest dedicated organic milk cooperative, with exports of cheese, butter and infant formula grade milk powders to the USA, EU and Australasia. He also has a long and successful record of chairing industry and government bodies in the food and farming sector, including being the chair of the Central Council for Agricultural and Horticultural Cooperation, founder chair of Food from Britain, president of the Fresh Produce Consortium and chair of the Agricultural Forum.

Image of staff member Mike Sheldon

Mike Sheldon

Board Member and Pork Sector Chair

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Image of staff member Colin Bateman

Colin Bateman

Board Member and Beef and Lamb Sector Chair

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Image of staff member Sarah Bell

Sarah Bell

Board Member and Cereals and Oilseeds Sector Chair

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Image of staff member Lyndon Edwards

Lyndon Edwards

Board Member and Dairy Sector Chair

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Image of staff member Janet Swadling

Janet Swadling

Board Member

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Image of staff member Stephen Briggs

Stephen Briggs

Board Member

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Image of staff member Dr Catherine MacKenzie

Dr Catherine MacKenzie

Board Member

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Image of staff member Sarah Pumfrett

Sarah Pumfrett

Board Member

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Image of staff member Peter Judge

Peter Judge

Interim Chair of AHDB Horticulture Sector Board and attends AHDB Board meetings (no voting rights)

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Image of staff member Alison Levett

Alison Levett

Interim Chair of AHDB Potatoes Sector Board and attends AHDB Board meetings (no voting rights)

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AHDB leadership team

Image of staff member Tim Rycroft

Chief Executive Officer - Tim Rycroft

Tim Rycroft joined the AHDB as CEO on 31 August 2021. He was formerly at the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) where he joined as Corporate Affairs Director in September 2015. In September 2018 he was promoted to Chief Operating Officer with responsibility for strategy and corporate affairs as well as overseeing the federation’s policy on diet & health and on competitiveness. Prior to FDF, Tim held senior corporate affairs roles with InterContinental Hotels Group plc (as Director of Communications, Europe); Diageo plc (as Corporate Relations Director, GB and then Corporate Relations Director, Global Duty Free) and Boots Healthcare International (as Head of Corporate Affairs).  For three years Tim was a Special (political) Adviser in government, to the Minister without Portfolio and then to the Secretary of State for Health. Tim has also worked in corporate communications consultancy.

Image of staff member Ken Boyns

Ken Boyns

Divisional Director – Services

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Image of staff member Will Jackson

Will Jackson

Divisional Director – Engagement / Strategy Director for Beef and Lamb

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Image of staff member Naveen Gupta

Naveen Gupta

Finance Director

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Image of staff member Richard Laverick

Richard Laverick

Chief Officer, Livestock Information Programme

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Image of staff member Jackie Kay

Jackie Kay

HR Director

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