The Nestlé Professional Toque d'Or Apprentice programme has been developed with partners HIT Training and People 1st as well as industry figures such as chef Simon Hulstone.
The competition is open to all hospitality craft apprentices at commis chef level, and has been designed to drive the development and skills of apprenticeships across the industry.
Entries close on 26 January 2017, and applicants will then be required to register digital details of a main course dish that demonstrates "nutrition, health and wellness". Prepared Nestlé Professional ingredients for this dish will then be delivered to the apprentice's place of work with a list of other fresh ingredients that can be bought and included in the dish. This main course will become the apprentices' ‘signature' dish throughout the remainder of the competition.
Three national heats where competitors will be asked to recreate their signature dish for four covers will run during February 2017 at Hospitality House, London with the grand finals taking place in March and the winner of the 2017 Toque d'Or Apprentice announced on the 12 May 2017 at The Dorchester hotel in London, alongside the winner of the student Toque d'Or Award.
The winning apprentice will receive one week's work experience at a high-end restaurant followed by dinner for the apprentice and a guest plus a voucher to spend on catering equipment at Russums.
Last year's winner in the pilot Toque d'Or Apprentice competition was Luka Seddon, apprentice commis chef at CH&Co, who faced strong competition in a gruelling two-day event at Hospitality House in London last May.
The apprentices faced a series of challenges including a culinary invention test, a ‘Question of Catering' challenge, and a Dragons' Den style presentation, designed to test their knowledge, creativity, communication and entrepreneurial skills across a host of different sectors.
"The development of the apprentice competition heralds a new era, recognising the growing importance of vocational training in hospitality. After all, the apprentices coming up through the competition will go on to be the decision-makers of tomorrow."
To enter employers are asked to email email@example.com with the subject line: Toque d'Or Apprentice Registration to confirm entry details.