New qualifications for processing sector

Food processing workers in the UK will soon be able to increase their work skills through a new competency-based vocational qualification system.

The system is part of a UK government push to increase the skills levels in the country's food and drink sector, which has a high level of unqualified staff (19 percent) compared to the national average (11 percent).
Improve, a government-funded organisation established to deal with the problem, says the new National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs) for food and drink workers apply in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and Scotland. The qualifications can be achieved in the workplace and are meant to assess a candidate's competence whilst they are doing their job.
The qualifications, divided into three levels, are available for new workers, for more experienced staff, for supervisory and for technical employees. A separate qualification is available for managers in the meat and poultry sectors. The training courses are structured around units of competence directly derived from the UK's National Occupational Standards (NOS).
"Previously many industries have had their own qualification, which although containing valuable content lacked the consistency and transferability across all the different sub-sectors," Improve stated in announcing the new training standards.
The qualification allows individuals to pick and tailor their learning at the different levels to specialise in their areas of interest.
Details of the qualifications are available at the Improve website.

Editor WorldPoultry

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