Seven teachers from Northants and Leicestershire were the latest group to get a glimpse behind the scenes of the chilled food sector. They visited one of the region’s largest food manufacturers they are already taking that knowledge back to the classroom to inspire budding food scientists of the future.
The visit, to Samworth Brothers’ Melton Foods, saw teachers tour the factory floor and meet the teams responsible for producing for up to a million sandwiches a week on the site. They heard about food hygiene, storage and how new products are developed, giving them an insight into this fast moving sector of the food industry.
It was part of the CFA’s initiative to encourage more children and young people to think about technical careers in the production of chilled food. Chilled Education (www.chillededucation.org), has been developed to help address predicted skills shortages due to the lack of graduate recruits.
During the day teachers enjoyed first-hand experience of all aspects of chilled food production at Samworths and met the experts. They have now taken their knowledge back to the classroom together with free resources available from Chilled Education including innovative Glo-Germ kits, which memorably illustrate the importance of proper hand washing.
Head of Food Technology at Prince William School in Oundle Fiona Croft said: “The visit was informative and enjoyable. It was fascinating to see the science and skills that go into making the food we may often take for granted. I am already using the hand washing experiment resources to teach my pupils the importance of good hygiene. The HACCP information will be hugely beneficial in 6th form teaching.”
Mary-Ann Kilby, MD of Samworth’s Melton Foods site explains more: “Many young people do not realise the different and interesting jobs the chilled food industry can offer. We are therefore delighted to host visits such as these. They help to show how attractive this fast-moving and ever-changing environment can be and demonstrate the range of careers on offer to anyone interested in science.”
Kaarin Goodburn, CFA Secretary General adds: “The visit to Samworth Brothers is a wonderful example of how important it is for teachers to experience the industry first hand. Only then can they begin to pass on knowledge and inspiration to their classes. Attendees were interested to hear about current innovations and career opportunities for students. And they are passing their feedback and learning back to their colleagues, including curriculum managers. Which is exactly what we want to achieve through Chilled Education.”
The Chilled Education resources have been developed by CFA in partnership with the Design and Technology Association; they will help get the lessons into schools across the UK through their UK-wide network of over 6,000 design and technology teachers.
Notes to Editors
Teachers attended from: Beauchamp College, Oadby; Chenderit School, Banbury; Hastings High School, Burbage; Lancaster School, Leicester; Prince William School Oundle; Soar Valley College, Leicester and Leicester Education Business Company.