Apprenticeships are key to developing next generation

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

To celebrate National Apprenticeship Week, Amie Burke – AHDB Skills Development Manager - explains why taking on an apprentice is a win-win for all involved 

Investing in young talent is crucial for the future of the industry and apprenticeships offer a real, long-term solution to its success and sustainability. By combining on-the-job training with the relevant qualifications, businesses can help the next generation develop the right skills and experience they need to thrive, whilst at the same time building a fully competent workforce. It’s a win-win for all involved.

As part of National Apprenticeship Week and following the launch of new standards for our Trailblazer Apprenticeships, AHDB has devoted a section of its website to helping businesses take that important first step to expanding and developing its labour force. We have created a range of new support tools which dispel the myth that taking on an apprentice is a complicated and protracted process. In fact, it couldn’t be simpler.

We have started by pulling together a set of FAQs to support employers who are considering apprenticeships – which includes everything from how to find an apprentice, to how to get the most from your new recruit. Any question you have about apprenticeships can be found there. We have also developed a Skills Matrix for each of the standards which identifies the activities that the apprentice must do to achieve competencies in different areas. This is a fantastic resource as it has worksheets that include all the knowledge, skills and behaviours your apprentice will need to demonstrate. All you need to do is record the dates on when the training takes place and when they have shown full competence. Alongside this is an apprentice checklist; a helpful list of tasks to consider before the apprentice comes to join your business.

These new support tools are incredibly important as they help businesses understand the process, stay focused on what’s required and ensure their apprentice is developing their skills fully. Apprenticeships offer farmers and growers an excellent way to recruit new people and develop them while they work, helping to ensure the business can continue to be productive, profitable and progressive. And it is clear that the more we invest in a person, the more we get back from them. Which can only be good for the industry and the individual business.

AHDB is currently looking for further insight into what the next set of standards should be. As they are industry-led, businesses are being urged to get involved and have their say. Contact Amie Burke at to discuss apprenticeships in more detail.