About the experts

We work with diet, nutrition and health professionals, scientists, researchers, academics, and agricultural experts

Their objective is to provide independent, objective and evidence-based information on a wide variety of food groups that comprise a healthy and balanced diet.

Balanced nutrition is evidence-based and involves a range of foods which provide the necessary nutrients for good health. There are national dietary guidelines on the NHS website, suitable for most people over the age of two, which underpin this campaign. Advice on balanced nutrition needs to be appropriate for its audience, and dietitians (the only nutrition professionals governed by law) can provide tailored advice to individuals. A dietitian must apply knowledge supported by evidence, research and trials, as opposed to advice based upon personal opinion, beliefs or for financial gain.

The experts we work with ensure they practise in line with their associated professional codes of conduct, including: HCPC Standards of Conduct Performance and Ethics, BDA (British Dietetic Association) Code of Professional Conduct for BDA members, the Royal Society of Biology, the Royal Society of Medicine, the Learned Society of Wales and the Medical Defence Union.

The experts will receive a fee for providing their expertise, knowledge and skill. However, any financial payments will not influence their judgement and are declared transparently here, in accordance with the Advertising Standards Authority guidance, and members must also remain objective and evidence-based. Views expressed are their own personal views.

The information service provided by these experts is managed and supported by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board.

Meet some of the experts

Mabel Blades

Mabel Blades

Dr Mabel Blades RD, MPhil, MBA is an experienced dietitian registered with the HCPC and the British Dietetic Association. Expertise is provided to individuals, care sector, industry and legal clients. Dr Blades aims to simplify complex nutritional issues into everyday language and thus enhance understanding of foods and nutrition. She has written a number of books including “Nutrition and Health” plus recipe books.

Photo of Food Advisory Board member Gill Jenkins

Gill Jenkins

With 25 years' experience, and particular interests in lifestyle, weight management and diabetes, Gill is a GP, part-time in the NHS and privately, as well as a medical writer and freelance broadcaster. Gill believes that maintaining a varied, balanced diet filled with vitamins and minerals, along with regular exercise, is key to living a healthy, active lifestyle.

Photo of Food Advisory Board member Robert Pickard

Robert Pickard

Robert Pickard is Emeritus Professor of Neurobiology at the University of Cardiff; Visiting Professor at the Royal Agricultural University; and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology, the Royal Society of Medicine and the Learned Society of Wales. Formerly, he was Chair of the UK Consumers' Association, Which?, and Director-General of the British Nutrition Foundation.

Photo of Food Advisory Board member Nigel Scollan

Nigel Scollan

Nigel Scollan is Director of The Institute for Global Food Security and Professor of Animal Science at Queens University, Belfast. The Institute addresses key challenges around: (1) Farms of the Future: developing paradigm shifts in agricultural practices to enhance profitability and sustainability without compromising biodiversity and ecological function; (2) Global Food Integrity: use of state-of-the-art approaches (analytical, molecular, computational) to improve the safety of global food supply chains and prevent fraud and (3) Nutritional challenges of the twenty-first century: better understanding of how human diet impacts a range of health outcomes and development of intervention strategies to maximise wellbeing.

Professor Scollan conducted his PhD at the University of Edinburgh, followed by a postdoctoral appointment at the University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada, before joining the Institute of Grassland and Environmental Research, Aberystwyth, in 1993 and subsequently the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), Aberystwyth University, in 2008.