2 minutes with... Christine Hayes, Editor Olive

Olive launched at the end of last year. Why did the BBC think it was time for another food magazine?

We identified a new readership niche – what we call the ‘white plate’ generation – of 25-40-year-old foodies who take their cues from travel, restaurants and bar culture and we wanted to cater to them.

How is Olive different from any other food magazine?

We’re the first magazine for foodies that’s hip, rather than homely. We’re also full of easy recipes that look impressive, along with restaurant reviews, trends and travel, and we have a unique, spectacular design that sets us apart.

How should PROs get in touch?

Email or post. If sending products then send the pitch with them. Telephone is too time consuming.

So what’s your, er, recipe for the perfect PR pitch?

A succinct letter or email addressed to the correct department head. If the product is right for us, it doesn’t need dressing up.

What most upsets you about PR professionals?

Addressing stuff to people who don’t work here anymore or to the wrong people on the magazine. It really annoys me when travel PROs recommend freelance writers that are not familiar with our tone and style. Some PROs pitch stories and I can’t imagine what section they could go into, so I ask: ‘Have you read Olive?’ and they say, ‘I’ve flicked through it’. That’s so annoying.

Are you hard to impress when PROs wine and dine you?

I’m generally hard to impress – I’m a typical Olive reader. But that means I’m always interested in going to new restaurants and visiting old favourites.

If you had to change jobs, would you rather be a food PR or a chef?

In one you have to be very diplomatic, and in the other not. On balance, I’d rather be a chef.

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