Food Connections Business Bootcamps

Everything you need to know about the Business Bootcamp

As well as the 100+ feasts, tours, talks and workshops which take place as part of Food Connections each year for residents & visitors, we also run a series of events for the people behind the scenes of our fabulous food scene – the Business Bootcamp!

The aim of this all-day conference is to get people from across the South West’s food & drink scene to get together to learn, chat and eat some great food!

Food Connections volunteer

Here are a few reasons to nab a ticket…


We know that taking time away from work can be difficult, so you can choose to attend the full day of events, or just one session if easier.

Individual sessions are priced at £10 each. Full day tickets are £45 and include breakfast & lunch in the price. 

The Bootcamp will take place in Colston Hall, which is also hosting the Food Connections Festival Hub.

Throughout the day you’ll also be able to watch free cookery demos and workshops in the main foyer, take part in a morning rave, or make use of the space to have meetings and catch-up on emails in between sessions.

St Nicholas Market beehives


Each session will last approximately 90 minutes and will include an expert talk followed by a panel discussion, so you’ll hear a good mix of opinions and perspectives throughout the day.

The sessions will cover the following topics:

  • Food Tourism – current worldwide trends, and the opportunities for Bristol as a food tourism destination. Speakers include Visit Bristol, Josh Eggleton, Bristol 24/7, Box-E and the World Food Travel Association.
  • Marketing & PR – how to work with press & influencers, how to create a marketing plan, and when to outsource. Speakers include Duchess Media, Season + Taste, Good Chemistry and Bristol Spirit.
  • Investment & Funding – different options for funding your business, how to get them, and what risks you need to be aware of.  Speakers include Wriggle, Chance & Counters and Seedrs.
  • Sustainability – how to scale up your business, choose eco packaging, stand out from the crowd and make a sustainable business plan. Speakers include Papadeli, Strawberry Thief and Planet Mark Start.
  • Instagram -tips for making your food photos stand out, and the pros and cons of using this popular platform to advertise your business. Speakers include Natalie Brereton, Genevieve Taylor, Matt Inwood, Rob Wicks, The Gallimuafry and Eatchu.

As well as our expert speakers, we’ll also have a range of businesses on hand to offer advice on important topics including business insurance, funding, legal issues and more.


It wouldn’t be a Food Connections event without food at the centre!

We won’t just be talking about food, we’ll also have a range of healthy dishes available at a special price for bootcamp attendees at Bowl of Plenty in Colston Hall, as well as a special offer of 20% off all food at Bambalan across the road.

Day ticket holders will get breakfast & lunch included in the price of their ticket. There may also be a few surprise treats on the day…


One of the best parts of days like these is taking time away from your day job to meet others with the same challenges.

Whether it’s chatting with another like-minded business owner, comparing notes with a fellow chef or picking the brain of someone you’ve seen on Twitter, we’ll have a great mix of people throughout the day, so make the most of it and get chatting!

As part of the panel discussions in each bootcamp session, you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions both before and during the event, so get thinking!

The Business Bootcamp wouldn’t be possible without our sponsors Brunel Insurance Brokers and Gregg Latchams, as well as support from our partners Enterprise Nation, Destination Bristol, GetSet for Growth, The Pitch and Social Media Week Bristol.

Find out more here.

Bringing people and good food together