After university, Emma Dunlop secured a work placement with Corus UK, which helped her get on Tesco's graduate scheme. Her first role with Tesco was as a frozen food buyer. She joined Sainsbury's eight months ago and has taken to the role with determination as well as impressing suppliers with her energy and enthusiasm.

?Nicky Lees Yoghurts and health drinks buyer, Asda

Nicky Lees started as a trading assistant at Asda, before becoming a trainee buyer for cosmetics. Lees joined the supermarket's chilled team as its ready meals buyer. A year ago she became part of the dairy team team and has since taken on desserts and active health drinks.

?Steve Dixon Trading controller, Nisachill

Steve Dixon started out pushing trolleys for a supermarket. He worked his way up to store manager, spent 10 years working for various stores and then switched to field sales. He joined Nisa-Today's as a buying controller and oversees eight frozen and chilled categories.

?James Cornish Desserts buyer, Tesco

James Cornish joined Tesco in January 2004 as its lead customer manager in dairy. Before joining Tesco he worked at GlaxoSmithKline as a national account manager. He spent time as the buying manager for butters, spreads and margarine before moving into his role as buyer for sandwiches, cream cakes and desserts.

?Laura Kingsman Dairy buyer, Budgens

Kingsman's career with Budgens began five years ago when she moved from Safeway as a trainee buyer. She has bought yoghurts for more than three years and was responsible for launching Budgens' own label low fat yoghurts and its premium own label.

?Jane Hills Dairy buyer, Waitrose

Jane Hills has worked at Waitrose since 2004, running the short-life dairy category. Before joining Waitrose, she worked at Safeway, gaining buying experience in a number of categories including bakery, frozen food and grocery. Hills has a degree in food science.