New pork programme will increase industry skills

To help expand the reservoir of meat skills and increase knowledge of cuts in the supply chain, a new online training programme has been launched for pork.

Improving pork handling skills and providing training to increase the variety of cuts used is particularly important in the food services sector, where the UK food-to-go market is forecast to reach a value of £21.2 billion in 2019, up 3% on 2018.

The free Meat Education Programme (MEP) also aims to help industry address the challenge of finding people with good knife and butchery skills to work in other areas including, butchers, abattoirs and meat processing plants.

The new pork modules build on the success of AHDB’s training for the beef and lamb supply chain, where more than 7,000 certificates have been awarded to proficient students, with course materials downloaded 20,000 times.

AHDB’s master butcher and meat expert, Dick van Leeuwen, said: “There are many people who work in the pork supply chain who could benefit from further developing their skills and understanding of meat. The Meat Education Programme enables them to do that for free, online and whenever they want.

“Through the beef and lamb modules, we’ve already trained thousands of people. It’s now routinely used in the retail and food services supply chain, at catering colleges and in retailers across the country. Training companies are even using them as a basis to run courses, so the new pork modules will make the programme a one-stop-shop for red meat training.”

AHDB’s master butcher and meat expert, Dick van Leeuwen

AHDB’s master butcher and meat expert, Dick van Leeuwen

Launched in 2015, the award-winning programmenow consists of nine practical and 13 theory modules. Some modules are targeted at those who need knowledge of meat cuts but do not work directly with it, for instance those in marketing, sales, new product development and media roles.

Butchery training provider, Crosby Management Training also uses the MEP.

Its chief executive Paul Cadman, said: “We’re delighted to see that the excellent Meat Education Programme has now been updated to include pork. This is a much-needed addition; we at CMT cannot wait to get all our apprentices active on the revised AHDB MEP website.”

The suite of meat training materials are available HERE.

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