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UK Food Manufacturers Treble Apprenticeships in 2012

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UK Food Manufacturers Treble Apprenticeships in 2012

UK Food Manufacturers Treble Apprenticeships in 2012
December 20
11:42 2012

Food and drink manufacturers have trebled the number of apprenticeships across the industry, beating an original target to double before the end of 2012.

The latest data from the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) and the sector skills council, Improve, shows that since August 2011 there have been 5,281 apprenticeship starts in food and drink manufacturing businesses across the country. Apprenticeships now make up 1.3% of the overall food and drink manufacturing workforce – up from 0.4% in 2010/11.

The Food and Drink Federation’s (FDF) Apprenticeship Pledge, launched last year, aims to build a pool of talented apprentices that can be developed and deployed across the sector.

The UK food industry has also introduced its own Graduate Excellence engineering degree course. Half of the work placements required for the forty students have already been pledged for the course, which launches in 2014 at Sheffield Hallam University. So far, 23 placements and other offers of support have been pledged by: apetito, Arla Foods, Burton’s Biscuit Company, Cargill, Dalehead Foods, General Mills, Mars, Mondelez, Nestlé, Premier Foods, United Biscuits, Warburtons and the William Jackson Food Group.

Graduate Excellence will be the UK’s first dedicated food and drink engineering degree. It is currently being developed by FDF in partnership with the National Skills Academy (NSA) for food and drink and Sheffield Hallam University where the programme will be based. The degree course will begin in September 2014.

Both the Apprenticeship Pledge and Graduate Excellence aim to build the skills the UK’s food and drink manufacturing sector needs for the future, enabling it to meet its ambition to grow 20% by 2020.

The Food and Drink Federation’s President Jim Moseley, says: “Our Apprenticeship Pledge and Graduate Excellence programme are both key to attracting the talented individuals that we need for the future, enabling us to achieve our joint vision with government to grow our sector 20% by 2020. Having so many great companies on-board, offering quality apprenticeships and work placements as part of the degree, is a sign of our industry’s commitment to support the next generation of skilled food and drink employees and to achieving our vision.”

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