Roundtable Chair
  • Gail Hunt

    Editor, Machinery Update

    Machinery Update is the official publication of the PPMA (Processing and Packaging Machinery Association). Launched in 1989, Machinery Update has developed an unrivalled reputation as the prime source of information amongst buyers and specifiers for the processing and packaging industry as a whole.

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Food Companies
  • Martin Miller

    Allied Bakeries

    Martin is currently Director of Engineering and Operations Development at Allied Bakeries. He has worked for over 30 years in food manufacturing in a variety of engineering and operations roles at a several FMCG businesses, including United Biscuits, PepsiCo and Morrisons. He has overseen large automation projects in the snack foods, meat and bakery sectors and has worked with most of the original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) providing automation solutions.

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  • Ian Wright CBE

    Chief Executive | Food and Drink Federation (FDF)

    Ian is the Chief Executive Officer for the FDF – the representative voice for companies and trade associations within the food and drink sectors. Before joining FDF in March 2015, Ian spent 14 years with world-leading beverage supplier, Diageo, where he was a member of the executive committee responsible for the company’s reputation. Prior to then, he worked for health and beauty pharmacy, Boots; confectioner, Mars, and even had a successful spell in politics. Ian chairs the Food & Drink Sector Council, the Government’s industry advisory body. He also chairs the Food & Drink Trade Association roundtable. Ian received an honorary knighthood for his political and public service in August 2015.

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Automation Suppliers
  • Mark Stepney

    Schubert UK

    Mark is an experienced business leader that has been active within the packaging machine automation arena for more than 30 years. He has spent the last 10 years as Managing Director of Schubert in the UK. Schubert is ‘probably’ the most innovative vision guided robotic packaging machine manufacturer in the world. It has been successfully automating production facilities globally for more than 50 years and is now heavily focussed on increasing productivity for its customers throughout the UK.

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  • Bob Hinchcliffe

    James Mae Industries

    Bob has over 50 years of practical experience in engineering and is currently the Managing Director of James Mae Industries – a specialist automation company. A large proportion of Bob’s work has been in the field of bespoke automation systems; particularly in the field of Food Manufacturing. He has also been a longstanding member of the BARA Council and has been heavily involved with the introduction of the RIA/BARA Certified Robot Integrators' Scheme in the UK. Bob is a chartered engineer and a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

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Other Speakers
  • David Atkinson

    Lloyds Banking Group

    Dave has over 30 years’ experience in the banking industry, having joined Lloyds Banking Group in 1988, and has since held various client relationship management and senior leadership roles within the Group. Dave has led the SME & Mid-Corporate Manufacturing sector across the UK since 2014 and continues as Regional Director for the Commercial Banking division across the East of England, from which he leads a team of 70 managers supporting around 7,000 commercial clients. He also sits on a several committees and advisory boards linked to various sector manufacturing & engineering initiatives.

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  • Simon Pearson

    University of Lincoln

    Simon Pearson is Director of the Lincoln Institute of Agri-Food Technology (LIAT) at the University of Lincoln. LIAT is now one of the UK’s leading research groups on agri-food robotics and lead the EPSRC AgriFoRwArds Centre for Doctoral Training, a cohort of 50 PhD’s in robotics supervised jointly between the University of Lincoln, Cambridge and East Anglia. LIAT’s research includes the development of autonomous vehicles, as well-advanced imaging, control and manipulation for the handling of food products. Prior to joining Lincoln, Simon had a leadership role in the agri-food industry for 15 years.

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  • Mike Wilson

    Chairman | BARA

    Mike has over 35 years’ experience in robotics and automation gained across a broad range of manufacturing sectors throughout Europe, North America and Asia. He is widely recognised as one of the leading authorities on the application of industrial robot systems in the UK. Mike is the current chairman of BARA (1999-2021) and Chief Automation Officer at the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC). He also served as chairman of the International Federation of Robots (IFR) between 2000-2003.

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