New pork programme will increase industry skills

Wednesday, 9 October 2019

A new, online training programme has been launched for pork to help expand the reservoir of meat skills in the supply chain.

The free Meat Education Programme (MEP) aims to address the challenge of finding people with good knife and butchery skills to work in food services outlets, butchers, abattoirs, meat processing plants and more.

It follows the success of the AHDB training programme in 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.”

Launched in 2015, the award-winning beef and lamb education programme now 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.

One of Europe’s leading food processors has been using the beef and lamb training modules to develop employees.

Pete Horton, Apprentice Mentor at ABP Ellesmere, said: “We’ve been using the Meat Education Programme’s (MEP) learning resources for the past three years now. The beef and lamb modules are fantastic learning aids to support our abattoir and butchery apprentices.

“It’s an invaluable source of training, whether you are training staff new to your business or the industry, or whether you are simply upskilling your current workforce.”

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 in our trade area.