26 October 2012
Scottish food and drink manufacturers get on-board with apprenticeships
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Yesterday, more than twenty Scottish food and drink manufacturing companies
gathered in Edinburgh to find out why apprenticeships are so important to their
sector and how they can increase numbers within their own companies.
Attendees of the Food and Drink Federation's (FDF) Apprenticeship Roadshow
heard directly from two apprentices at Scottish manufacturer Devro about what
bring to their company. Modern apprentices Grant Dixon and Chris Hill told
delegates about their experiences of apprenticeships in the sector, what they
from the apprenticeship and the positive contribution that they each make to
Delegates also heard from Justine Fosh, Director at the National Skills Academy
for Food and Drink, on the steps businesses can take to introduce
apprenticeships in their companies. The event covered the Modern Apprenticeship
currently on offer in Scotland and what funding is available.
Dr Colette Backwell, Director of the Scottish Food and Drink Federation,
“It is heartening to see so many Scottish food and drink manufacturing companies
interested in engaging with apprenticeship schemes. Apprenticeships are an
excellent route into our sector and also provide significant benefits for
“Hearing directly from Devro's apprentices at the Apprenticeship Roadshow really
brought home to me just how important they (apprentices) are for our industry.
Their presentation skills, enthusiasm and aspirations are typical of the
qualities in young apprentices and demonstrate the significant value they bring
businesses. We need more young talented people like these as they play a vital
part in the growth of the food and drink manufacturing industry. I would like
encourage companies to take advantage of our offer of advice to get started or
grow their apprenticeship programmes."
Justine Fosh, Director at the National Skills Academy for Food and Drink, said:
"The National Skills Academy for Food and Drink is delighted to be supporting
the FDF's Apprenticeship Pledge. In the past apprenticeships have been seen as mainly relevant to
engineering roles but this is simply not the case now – there are now
the food sector that cover the whole range of job roles in our industry – from
craft baker to continuous improvement manager, meat processor to milling
“As specialists in food industry training, and as part of Improve, the
organisation that designs apprenticeships for our industry, we can assist any
business interested in apprenticeship activity. We are offering all FDF
part of the pledge, a personal visit and free one to one advice session to help
them get started or expand their apprenticeship activity.”
Note to Editors:
- The Food and Drink Federation (FDF) is the voice of the food and drink
manufacturing industry – the UK's largest manufacturing sector. For more
about FDF and the industry we represent visit: www.fdf.org.uk.
- Further information on the Scotland Food and Drink Skills Academy.
- Scottish Food and Drink and Federation, FDF's sister organisation, is the voice
of the Scottish food and drink manufacturing industry – Scotland's largest
manufacturing sector. www.sfdf.org.uk
- For more information on how businesses can start or grow their apprenticeship
programmes, food and drink businesses can contact Dr Colette Backwell on 131
8030 / Colette.Backwell@fdf.org.uk.
- FDF launched an industry pledge in 2011 to double the number of apprenticeships in the industry in England and
Scotland to 3400 by the end of 2012. It has since been working with companies
make it easier for them to navigate through the process of setting up
apprenticeships and arranging training and study.
The Apprenticeship Roadshows aim to inform food companies of the benefits
apprentices can bring to businesses, such as increased productivity and a more
Throughout 2012, Roadshows have been taken to London, Birmingham and Preston.
Nationally, the Roadshows have been delivered in partnership with the National
Apprenticeship Service and the National Skills Academy for food and drink.
- Further information on Skills Development Scotland.
Photos from the event are available on the FDF Flickr page.
For media enquiries, please contact Anna Taylor on 0207 420 7118.
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