Mayo Sligo Leitrim Education and Training Board (MSLETB) presented awards to the 2022 graduates of the National Craft Butchery Apprenticeship Programme with their certificates at Teagasc, Ashtown Food Research Centre, Dublin on the 20th of July, 2022.

Speaking at the event today, John Hickey Chair of the CSG said, “Your parchment is your passport to more learning and is international recognition of your skills. Our National Craft Butchery Apprenticeship has successfully captured the traditions of the craft while simultaneously responding to the demands of a modern ever-changing marketplace.”

Jack Molloy President of ACBI said that the Craft Butchery Apprenticeship “is a voyage of self-discovery which will lead to a noble career which will be rewarded by hard work, effort and attention to detail. As newly qualified apprentices, you are the future lifeblood of this traditional industry.”

This new generation apprenticeship was developed by MSLETB in collaboration with Associated Craft Butchers of Ireland (ACBI) as part of the national strategy to address existing and future skills needs of the Irish fresh food sector and more specifically the Irish butchery sector, a sector with the lack of new entrants to the trade was at risk of losing its craft and generations of tradition.

This is a two-year programme delivered primarily “On-the-Job” by experienced Craft Butchers. The programme is supported by “Off-the-Job” learning in a training environment. Through this programme, craft butchery apprentices gain an understanding of a range of meat & meat products and the various techniques needed to process and prepare high-quality products.

In light of the pandemic, the programme has grown from strength to strength via successful collaborations with Cork College of Further Education and Training and Galway Roscommon Education and Training Board (GRETB), training is now provided in 4 locations; Dublin, Cork, Galway and Sligo, giving a total apprentice population of 107 and 85 retailers.

Upon completion of the programme, the apprentices will have gained a range of skills, knowledge and competencies, and an internationally recognised QQI Level 5 Certificate in Craft Butchery, all necessary to embark on a career in Craft Butchery.

 CE of MSLETB, Tom Grady, has also congratulated the many stakeholders involved in making the programme a national success and finished by congratulating the employers, mentors, and the graduates, Thank you to the employers and mentors of the graduates, for their support of the programme and of apprentices throughout their journey. Thank you to the apprentices for your hard work and dedication, you are true ambassadors of your employer, this programme, and MSLETB. I wish you the very best of luck in your career and for the future.”

For more information about the National Craft Butchery Apprenticeship programme, to become an approved employer, or to register as an apprentice, contact [email protected]



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