The deadline for the Country Range Student Chef Challenge has been extended to 18 December to give colleges more time to apply.
Now in its 25th year, the competition is run in conjunction with the Craft Guild of Chefs and offers teams of students the chance to put their skills to the test.
This year will focus on essential core skills and techniques from a second-year professional cooker course, including an Asian themed seabass starter, a main course duck dish that demonstrates butchery skills and a classic dessert with a modern twist.
Emma Holden, organiser of the Country Range Student Chef Challenge, said:
"The start of the college year in September and lead up to Christmas can be such a busy period for lecturers and students so we felt it was only fair to extend the deadline by two weeks to allow the teams to fine-tune their menus.
"With it also being the 25th anniversary of the Challenge, we want to make it extra special and have as many teams enter as possible so hopefully the deadline extension will allow us to do this."
Holden added the competition and others like it play a "huge part" in "raising the profile of the industry" and "giving students a platform on which to showcase their talents as the future stars of hospitality and catering."
She said: "Now more than ever there is a great need to change the negative perceptions that working in the hospitality and catering industry can have and highlight what a fantastic career it provides.
"With the existing skills shortage set to be accelerated by the outcome of Brexit it is essential that we focus on attracting young people to the industry and provide them with the skills they need to excel in the workplace."