As part of a major review of the National and Scottish Vocational Qualification (N/SVQ) system, food preparation and cooking NVQs have been restructured to reflect the industry’s needs.
The lead body for N/SVQs, the Hotel & Catering Training Company (HCTC), recently completed a consultation exercise with both users and non-users of the training scheme .
“We had a radical look at food prep and cooking,” explained Dr Anne Walker, the HCTC’s research director. “We hope it will now be much more relevant to broader industry needs.”
The restructured qualification levels breakdown into:
- Level 1 – food prep and cooking will now cover staff in kitchens who produce meals from mainly pre-prepared goods. It will also cover basic techniques and hygiene.
- Level 2 – covers a wider variety of food, also from mainly pre-prepared ingredients, but with more complex recipes.
- Level 3 – aimed at chefs using fresh ingredients and cooking complex dishes.
- Level 4 – deals with chefs working in top echelon kitchens at a supervisory level.
According to Dr Walker, the restructure of the qualifications should enable many more catering employers to take on board the N/SVQ training system.
The new structure will now be presented to businesses through 12 regional workshops, to be held over the next two months.
The workshops are open to anybody in the industry who is interested in chef training.
Other N/SVQs, such as housekeeping and food and beverage service, have also been reviewed, although the framework of these qualifications has been left unaltered and only some details have changed.