DfE announces new food and farming apprenticeships

Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss has announced plans for new food degree apprenticeships which will combine a high quality degree and on-the-job training.

Three apprenticeships will be spearheaded by the National Skills Academy for Food and Drink (NSAFD) and will be developed by a consortium of employers and industry representatives working to enhance the sector’s productivity. The degrees have been created to help safeguard the UK’s leading capabilities in high-tech food innovation.

Currently, the UK produces more food and drink products each year than France and Germany combined.

Truss will bring together over 30 food sector experts and employers to challenge the industry to provide more opportunities for young people.

Truss commented: “We have a proud heritage in food innovation – from Fry’s first ever chocolate bar to HP Sauce. Today we outstrip France and Germany when it comes to exciting new food and drink inventions. Food and farming should be a top career destination for our young people, as prestigious as medicine, as fun and stimulating as the gaming industry and as cutting-edge as London’s Tech City.

“We are already seeing more skilled workers enter the industry – rising faster than other areas of manufacturing – and these new degree apprenticeship schemes will provide an even brighter future in an industry that generates billions of pounds for our growing economy.”

Skills Minister Nick Boles said: “It used to be that some careers were only an option if you went to university – we’re changing that with degree apprenticeships. They give young people the chance to get on in life like never before and ensure businesses have the talented workforce they need to grow.

“Over the last couple of months I’ve been meeting talented apprentices working in the food sector – from Nestle to Rick Stein’s, apprenticeships are a real alternative for those who want to start their careers in this ever growing industry.”

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