Welcome to our Spring edition. I hope that by the time you read it, both the weather and the coronavirus crisis are beginning to subside.
The Craft Guild has been busy as usual, starting with our new accreditation award, which was launched recently. We started by assessing Westminster Kingsway and Birmingham colleges, but already many other colleges are showing an interest in wanting to be connected with us. We want to encourage more younger members of the Guild and benefit from the input they can bring.
Our education team leaders, Professor David Foskett and David McKown have created this award to ensure the Craft Guild can make a difference and building our relationships with colleges around the UK and beyond. The distinguished plaque and other benefits a college can earn will stay with them for five years when a follow-up assessment falls due. More information about the award is on our website.
The lunch club took a large step forward with a full house of 30 guests enjoying an outstanding lunch at Johns Restaurant in Loughborough. Organised by David McKown, the event has helped open up the Guild ‘beyond Watford Gap’, and shows we’re really spreading our wings.
It was going to be followed by similar events at the Dorchester Grill, The Angel at Hetton in the Yorkshire Dales, and The Pig in Honiton. These events are proving popular, but with circumstances as they are at present we have decided to postpone these for the time being. Please do check our website for any updates because, whether you are a member or not, these events help in networking across many different areas of hospitality.
Huge congratulations to Professor Foskett for launching his Culinary Medicine in February at Westminster College. This important project highlights that healthy eating no matter your age can prevent a lot of health issues. It is frightening that the data shows so many health issues are related to poor diets, often because people simply don’t cook at home or eat fresh foods.
The Culinary Academy led by Matt Owens, Chris Basten and Nick Vadis launched its intentions at a superb dinner at Westminster College in February. We had the pleasure of entertaining 100 guests and demonstrating the potential of the Academy in competitions around the world and providing continuity across all of the other challenges the Guild takes on.
Having the Academy up and running persuaded a big increase in entries to the culinary competitions at the recent HRC Show in March. It’s very exciting for the Guild to be driving and encouraging chefs of all ages and genders to compete for that Gold medal.
On a negative note, though, it is extremely frustrating to hear our Home Secretary make clear that it will be virtually impossible for anyone from outside the UK qualify for a work permit within our industry. It is hard enough finding staff as it is, and hence the importance of the Guild getting more involved with colleges and offering support in promoting hospitality as a career choice.
Finishing on a more positive note, we have been invited for a second time by the South Korean Embassy to work with them promoting Korean culinary culture. This is an honour, and we are very much looking forward to continue developing this relationship.
Please visit our website to stay up-to-date with developments, look out for our app, which will be launching soon, and if you are a Business Partner and want to promote your products or services, then please feel free to contact Andrew Green.