Umami – Michelle Dalley Food Industry branding & marketing expert

Things you may not know about Michelle...

Q: Favourite Food?
A: This is difficult. If it were the only thing I could ever eat it would probably be toast and salty butter. Also on the list is smoked Haddock risotto, pan fried Turbot, Vacherin Cheese...

Q: Most awesome restaurant?
A: The Wolesley – many special occasions celebrated there. Always fabulous, always memorable.

Q: Creative inspiration?
A: Taste of London – so many great brands and fantastic food.

Q: I will never eat...
A: Liver (eeewww)

Q: Fantasy dinner party guests?
A: Frank Sinatra, Gordon Ramsey, Caitlin Moran, Leonardo DiCaprio, Quentin Tarantino, George Michael, Steve Jobs, India Knight, Henry VIII, Sarah Jessica Parker, Karl Pilkington, Tamsen Greig.

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“Michelle is possibly the best Account Manager I've ever had the pleasure of working with. Her professionalism, dynamic approach and creative and analytical skills make her quite simply the most engaging and capable individual I have worked with.”
Fraser Chynoweth – Sales Director Foodservice at Tate & Lyle

“Michelle has great energy and enthusiasm in her work , she is customer centric and great to work with. I have no hesitation in recommending her.”
Martin Bott – CEO at M&J Seafood at Brakes

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Michelle grew up in the Midlands and found her first full time role with Pyke Biggs Fairfax Catering Butchers (now known as Fairfax Meadow). Michelle thrived in working with Chefs and found the industry fascinating; this role was instrumental in how her career would progress. Several years later she joined the newly formed Larderfresh, a company specialising in bringing premium and innovative foods to the foodservice industry. Michelle’s passion for food and thirst for product knowledge meant that she quickly built strong relationships with her customers and moved from an office based Telesales role to a Field Sales Representative. Working with Michelin Star chefs and the finest produce Michelle specialised in the complex fish and seafood industry.

When the Brake Group acquired M&J Seafood it was the perfect timing for Michelle to move into an Account Management role with M&J. This involved looking after clients such as Hilton, Holiday Inn, The Restaurant Group, Tragus, Mitchells & Butlers and various other high profile Foodservice operators.

Michelle left the seafood sector for a year to work with specialist cheese supplier - The Cheese Cellar. The challenge of working with a smaller operator gave Michelle valuable insight and experience in costings, production and operations. Working with premium, short shelf life product.

Michelle was head hunted to return to M&J Seafood where she took on the role of Channel Manager for the Pub sector, managing a team of skilled Account Managers looking after groups such as Greene King, Whitbread, Spirit, Punch and regional pub companies. Michelle also maintained and grew her own portfolio which included growing the Mitchells & Butlers account from £2.3million to £11.4million over a five year period. In addition she was responsible for gaining contracts with Selfridges and Harrods.

Michelle’s passion for the food industry was reflected in the award winning team results that were gained at M&J Seafood. Michelle and the team were instrumental in leading the pub sector in sustainable seafood and strategic, creative menu development and excellent customer relationships.

Michelle’s final role in Foodservice was with Brakes as Business Manager for Mitchells & Butlers. This was a challenging role across multi temperature products and involved a wide range of menu development.

In 2010 Michelle decided to join Haddon in Creating Media and has spent three years gaining extensive experience within this successful design company. In that period Michelle has gained confidence and strengthened the brand recognition for Creating Media across South Wales and the South West.

With over fifteen years’ experience in the foodservice industry Michelle maintains a strong connection with contacts built over many years and as a result Michelle and Haddon have launched Umami - Design Sense for Food to specialise in creative design across the food and drink sector.

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