Real Bread Campaign

Real Bread logo

What is the Real Bread Campaign?

Our mission is to find and shares ways to make bread better for us, better for our communities and better for the planet.

See also

 Not a supporter yet? Find our how and why to  join us now

What we are

The Real Bread Campaign is part of the charity Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming,

We want everyone to have the chance to choose Real Bread

Starting with a basic definition of Real Bread simply as being made without the use of any so-called 'processing aids' or other artificial additives, the Campaign seeks, finds and shares ways to make bread better for us, better for our communities and better for the planet.

Building on our success to date, we are now working to secure funding to help us unlock the social, therapeutic and employment opportunities offered by making Real Bread by hand. In this we aim to help people facing social exclusion due to a range of factors that might put them at a disadvantage, including living with mental health issues or physical disabilities. read more here.

The Real Bread Campaign was co-founded by Sustain and Andrew Whitley of Bread Matters.



See how we're getting on here.

More generally, we are:

  • Running a supporter network to unite everyone who bakes, or simply loves, Real Bread. Sharing the pleasures and benefits of locally-baked Real Bread over what we see as adulterated imitations
  • Challenging examples of what we see as misleading marketing of industrial/supermarket loaves
  • Helping to raise awareness of issues around additives and hidden processing aids
  • Championing the cause of more research into issues of health and nutrition (including digestibility, intolerance, allergy and GI) to establish factors that could have a beneficial effect (such as longer fermentation, the use of sourdough, and wheat breeding) and lead to more people being able to eat Real Bread

Our activities

In addition to the core work above, supporters of the Campaign around the country are engaged in activities such as:

  • Sharing the many values of Real Bread that have been lost in the quest for an ever cheaper loaf at the cost of all other considerations
  • Networking to bring farmers, millers, bakers and consumers closer together to create tighter food webs and support each other in making Real Bread available in their local communities; Real Bread bakers and other educators in sharing their skills, experience, passion and knowledge with children, caterers, professional and home bakers
  • Campaigning for: bread production that gives paramount importance to nourishment, flavour, digestibility and sustainability; support for local food systems, agricultural diversity and participatory plant breeding to enhance nutritional quality and local resilience
  • Lobbying for Real Bread values to be supported by policies covering education, training, food labelling, nutritional guidelines, nutritional and agricultural research

Campaign supporters

You don't have to be a baker to join the Campaign!

Though hundreds of people who support us are professional bakers, the majority do so because they share our concerns and love for Real Bread.

 Not a supporter yet? Then sign up online now

For the results of our 2011 supporters' survey, click here.

NB Our Real Bread Finder is a service we offer free of charge to shoppers and bakers - not all those with loaves listed are Campaign supporters.

Campaign ambassadors

As the risk of sounding twee, we hope all of our supporters will act as ambassadors for the rise of Real Bread.

We have chosen, however, to give this title to just a small number of people who champion the cause with a higher public profile. Our criteria are:

  • Experience as a skilled, professional Real Bread baker.
  • Passion for Real Bread.
  • Willingness to promote the Campaign at every opportunity and help us to gain new supporters.
  • Having a high-enough public profile to help spread the Campaign's message at a national level, via TV, radio, newspaper and magazine features, public events, books etc. 

In alphabetical order our official ambassadors are:

Richard Bertinet
Originally from Brittany, Richard trained as a baker both there and at the Grand Moulin de Paris. Following stints at the Chewton Glen Hotel, as head chef at the Rhinefield House Hotel in the New Forest and as Operations Director with the Novelli Group of restaurants, Richard moved to Bath, where he still runs The Bertinet Kitchen cookery school and bakery. In addition to his acclaimed bread books Crust and Dough, Richard is the author of Cook and Pastry.  Richard has made numerous TV appearances on the BBC, Carlton, Channel 4 and UKTV Food.

Aidan Chapman
The 'soulful baker' for more than 20 years, Aidan is now a freelance teacher at baking schools around the country including Symondsbury, River Cottage HQ and Breadahead, and also does consultancy work. Highlights of his career include owning The Phoenix Bakery with his wife Lisa in Weymouth, five years as Head Baker at The Celtic Bakers in London, and helping to set up both Leaker’s Bakery in Bridport and The Town Mill in Lyme Regis. Aidan has made several television appearances alongside Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall, and often can be found encouraging people to take The Oath To The Loaf at food events and festivals.

Duncan Glendinning
Having given up on a lucrative career in the world of web, Duncan set about marrying a passion for the environment with his passion for real food and The Thoughtful Bread Company was born. Five years on and the company has earnt a solid reputation for the quality of the breads and goods that it produces and Duncan has been recgonised for his entrepreneurial skills, the environmental practices he builds into daily production, and his refreshing approach to this industry. Co-author of the book Bread Revolution, Duncan has also made numerous appearances on TV, including Nigel Slater (BBC), ITV1's Britain's Best Bakery and co-starring in BBC2's Big Bread Experiment.

Emmanuel Hadjiandreou
Emmanuel is head of baking at The School of Artisan Food. Originally from South Africa, he has worked for Gordon Ramsay, The Savoy, Daylesford Organics, Flour Power City and as head baker at Judges Bakery in Hastings. In 2012 the Guild of Food Writers’ presented him with The Jeremy Round Award for Best First Book for How to Make Bread, since when he has written Baking Bread Together for kids and their parents.

Andrew Whitley
The Campaign’s co-founder left his role as a BBC World Service producer in 1976 to found the Village Bakery, which from its origins serving Melmerby in the Lake District, grew to selling its Real Bread nationally. Since Andrew moved on from the business in 2002, he has run his training and consultancy company Bread Matters and written the award-winning book of the same name. In 2012 Andrew moved Bread Matters to Lamancha in Scotland, where he continues sharing with people Real Bread skills, pleasures and benefits, as well as questioning the true costs of additive-laden alternatives. Do Sourdough, his user-friendly guide to naturally-leavened loaves was published in 2014.

Why is X not one of your ambassadors?

The two reasons you don't see someone on this list are because a) he/she doesn't meet all four of our criteria; or b) because they declined an invitation to become a Real Bread Campaign amabassador.

NB  We're painfully aware that  there are no women on this list and we think it's a crying shame that none of the fantastic female professional Real Bread bakers we know has been embraced by the media to the point that they can tick the all-important fourth criterion above.

Campaign working party

From 2008-2013, the work of the Real Bread Campaign was guided by a group of experts, which met quarterly to advise the Campaign coordinator.

Chaired a trustee from the Sustain council, the working party comprised people invited from Sustain's member organisations and others with relevant expertise and experience.

Sustain plans to reconvene a Campaign working party when funding is secured for future plans.

Working party membership

Members of the working party (and the organisations that they represented) in May 2012.

Chair: Emma Hockridge (Soil Association)

Academy of Culinary Arts  -  Sara Jayne Stanes / Alexandra Sinclair
Bertinet Kitchen  -  Richard Bertinet
Bread Matters  -  Andrew Whitley
Campaign to Protect Rural England  - Graeme Willis
Caroline Walker Trust  -  Dr Helen Crawley
Cinnamon Square  -  Paul Barker
Cotton's Craft Bakery  - Graham Cotton
Doves Farm  -  Clare Marriage
F3 Local Food Consultants / Wild Yeast bakery  -  Simon Michaels
Farmeco   -  David Rose
Gilchesters Organics -  Andrew Wilkinson
Great Northumberland Bread Co  -  Matthew Rawlings
Handmade Bakery - Dan / Johanna McTiernan
Hobbs House Bakery  - Tom Herbert
Infinity Food bakery   - Colm Tothill
Judges Bakery  and School of Artisan Food - Emmanuel Hadjiandreou
King's College   - Professor Jonathan Brostoff
LandShare CIC  -  Amanda Cooper
Nicholas & Harris  -  Simon Staddon
QED London    - Silvija Davidson
Real Bread Campaign (Sustain) - Chris Young
Real Food Festival   - Phillip Lowery
Sharpham Park  - Roger Saul / Leona McDonald
Shipton Mill  - John Lister
Sociolegal   - Veronica Burke
Sustain - Charlie Powell
Traditional Cornmillers Guild -   Jonathan Cook / Nick Jones
Vintage Cook   - Angie Greenham

Staff and volunteers

Since July 2009 the Campaign has been coordinated by Chris Young.

He draws on the knowledge and expertise of the Campaign’s network of supporters and friends for advice, guidance and practical help.  He is assisted as necessary by part-time volunteers and also relies upon the support of Sustain’s finance, design and IT team.

Chris reports to Sustain’s management team of Sarah Williams, Kath Dalmeny and Ben Reynolds.

How we are funded

At the moment, the only income that Sustain receives that enables us to keep running the Real Bread Campaign is from:

  • supporter fees
  • private donations
  • payments and donations for our publications

Read more about:

We still knead dough!

At present, the income outlined above is not enough for Sustain to be able to employ a full-time member of staff with full cost recovery.*

In order to ensure the survival of the Campaign, we continue to work to secure additional income from by applying for charitable grants, promoting our supporter scheme and through fundraising initiatives including Real Bread Maker Week.

* Full cost recovery is the responsible, sustainable way of running a charity project, which takes into account not only the direct cost of a salary, but also a fair proportion of the charity's total overheads. You can read more about full cost recover on the Funding Central website here.

Past sources of income

  • The Big Lottery's Local Food programme provided 80% of the funds needed to run the Real Bread Campaign from July 2009 to June 2013
  • Sheepdrove Trust gave us an annual grant from July 2009 to June 2013


As part of the charity Sustain: The alliance for better food and farming, the Real Bread Campaign is independent from the agri-food industry.

In line with Sustain's general policy, the Campaign does not accept funding from any source which would compromise, or even appear to compromise, the alliance’s principles.

The Real Bread Campaign does not endorse or promote any one Real Bread bakery, baker, course, publication or organisation over another.

Supporter network
You don't need to be a baker to join us! Everyone can become a Campaign supporter, either as an individual or as a representative of a company or other organisation.

Real Bread Finder listing
Inclusion in our Real Bread Finder is solely dependent on the product shown being what we define as Real Bread. A listings there, on our events calendar, courses or any other pages of our site does not necessarily imply endorsement.

In line with Sustain policy, the Real Bread Campaign accepts no sponsorship from profit making organisations in the food and farming sector. The only money accepted from such companies/organisations are standard supporter payments in return for standard benefits.

Campaign logos
If a Campaign supporter chooses to display our 'proud to support...' badge, it simply signifies just that - they support the Campaign. The appearance of our supporter badge is not an assurance that Real Bread standards are being met.

For details of our separate Real Bread Loaf Mark scheme, please click here.