News article

4 May 2017

Showcase Event Highlights Food and Drink as Exciting Career Destination

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On Tuesday (2 May), teams of S2 pupils from four schools from the Perth and Kinross area presented the results of food industry related challenges to a team of 'dragons' as part of a showcase event exploring career destinations within the food and drink sector.

Teachers and lecturers from the local area have been participating in a Continuing Professional Development accredited training course introducing them to the food and drink manufacturing industry. They have been learning about the wider food and drink sector and its innovations as well as its efforts to become more sustainable. This knowledge base allows them to bring their subjects to life by teaching pupils about the relevance of science and technology, the wide variety of careers available in the sector and the skills required by employers.

Since the teachers completed the course they have been working on food and drink projects with their pupils. Some schools looked at product development, some sustainability, others science and some combined several areas of food manufacture.

All of the presentations on the day were excellent and the pupils and teachers had put in a lot of effort into investigating the different aspects of food manufacture and the supply chain.

The industry 'dragons' had a difficult time deciding on the winners and in the end three were chosen. This challenge is based on the popular TV programme Dragons Den and aims to put pupils' creative skills to the test.

The best presentation went to Crieff High School for their Bubble Tea project. This project looked at the science of creating bubble tea and involved the pupils carrying out thorough research and scientific analysis to develop a perfect product. The team provided an excellent, well researched presentation.

Kinross High School won the best overall project with Auntie Mhairis Sauce. This involved the pupils developing an apple sauce. The team presented a well-researched and thought out product that was delicious and reduced food waste.

The best sustainability project went to Breadalbane Academy who came up with the idea of reusable soup mugs that would reduce landfill and cut down on waste. The team worked with the school caterers to develop a loyalty scheme and created a new soup for the canteen to sell to support the launch of the mugs and encourage their use. The soup was created from vegetables that were donated by a supermarket that would otherwise be waste product due to being past their best before date.

Moira Stalker, FDF Scotland Schools Programme Coordinator, said:
“There are so many job opportunities available in the food and drink industry, including; science, product development, engineering, marketing, nutrition and design. By inspiring teachers to use food and drink to bring the subjects they teach to life, we can get even more Scottish children thinking about how their food is produced and how that relates to the many exciting jobs on offer.”

Jennifer Thompson-Young, Perth College UHI Sector Development Director:STEM added:
“Supported by the Perth and Kinross Developing Young Workforce Regional Board this project focused on building the group of teachers own knowledge of the dynamic and global supply chain involved in food and drink production. These educators have been empowered to enthuse students and parents about the sector's wide range of jobs and increasingly high level STEM-based career opportunities. Showcasing the attractiveness of the sector as an exciting and relevant study option and career destination aims to put Scottish young people ahead in employability opportunities.”

More Information

Photographs from the event are available on Flickr.

  • The whole food and drink industry from agriculture, fishing, aquaculture through to manufacturing makes a significant contribution to the economy, with an annual turnover of over £14bn and employing around 119,000 people.
  • FDF Scotland's schools work - A Future in Food, funded by the Scottish Government, helps teachers, pupils and parents better understand the food and drink industry in Scotland, highlights the wide variety of careers on offer, helps pupils understand the skills required by employers and how the subjects they study in school relate to the real world of work.

Contact Kirsty Ritchie, Food and Drink Federation Scotland, at: kirsty.ritchie@sfdf.org.uk, or 0131 222 8040.

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