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Archive for December, 2009

Food Science and Technology Education Forum

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

FTAA logo
From Peter Bush of the Food Technology Association of Australia (FTAA)

Food Science and Technology Education Forum

The FST Education Forum was held at CSIRO, FNS, Werribee on the 24th November 2009. It was attended by 46 delegates who represented Universities offering FST, TAFEs offering FST, Regional Development Victoria, representatives of the food industry and associations plus organisations providing science education in secondary schools. The morning offered a series of short presentations on various aspects of the situation facing the availability of work ready FST Graduates in Australia.

The delegates split into three working groups for the afternoon session to discuss issues in detail, to appoint task force working committees and to establish areas requiring further action. These working groups will feed back to “FST Education Forum II” scheduled for 16th March 2010. Task force details are as follows : -

SECONDARY SCHOOL EDUCATION WORKING GROUP. This group will investigate pilot extension programmes to the PICSE initiative – agri-science projects into schools , initiate dialogue with CSIRO Education with a view to participation in the “Scientists in Schools” and thus introducing real Food Science in schools, and to lobby to change “Food Science and Technology “ subjects at Secondary level to “Food Studies” nationally. The co-ordinator for this group is Michael Black (email, Tel 0411 298 011).

TERTIARY EDUCATION WORKING GROUP. This group plans to form a University Co-operative working group. They will prepare a FST graduate Skill Statement promoting FST graduates to industry, will improve communication to industry and associations and will be investigating joint University – Industry initiatives. The co-ordinator for this group is Lloyd Simons (email, Tel 03 9731 3311).

FOOD INDUSTRY WORKING GROUP This group will establish what Graduate FST Skills are required by industry at present and in the future, by company size and geographical location. They will investigate other industries having similar issues and will establish needs for skilled FST researchers and industry collaborative research. The co-ordinator for this group is Peter Bush (email, Tel 041 958 6723).

Should you feel you are able to assist with the investigations outlined above then please contact the co-ordinator of the specific group.

Click here to view the FTAA website.

AgriFood Environmental Scan 2010

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

AgriFood Skills Australia logo
AgriFood Skills Australia is looking for submissions for its Environmental Scan 2010.

From AgriFoods:

We wish to advise you and all industry stakeholders that AgriFood Skills Australia has begun its national consultations for the Environmental Scan 2010 on the skilling and workforce needs of the agrifood industry. We invite contributions and comments about your own sector and areas of interests from enterprises, industry representative organisations and government.

Our consultations will continue until early 2010 and we invite all stakeholders to participate in this process – see contact addresses below for submissions or go to the web links.

What we need to know
AgriFood Skills Australia is in the first stage of preparing the Environmental Scan.
This involves casting a net across the industry to capture contemporary views on:

  1. Factors impacting on agrifood’s workforce skills and labour supply
  2. Specific job roles and skills being affected
  3. Magnitude of impact
  4. What needs to be done to respond to new and emerging skill and workforce development needs

AgriFood Skills Australia welcomes comments and written submissions on these key questions from individuals, enterprises and industry organisations.

We would like to hear from those who work within the training system on the last of these questions.

Send your submissions and comments

Submissions marked ‘Environmental Scan submission’ may be forwarded electronically to and should be with us by no later than 31 December 2009.

PO Box 5450
Kingston ACT 2604
T: 02 6163 7200 F: 02 6162 0610 E:

Click here for more information on the AgriFood Skills Australia website.
Click here to find the AgriFood Environmental Scan 2009 on the AgriFood Skills Australia website.
Click here to view the AgriFood Environmental Scan 2010 explanatory flyer [PDF: 282KB].

IFFA Meat Vision Conference Competition

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

IFFA promotional imageMINTRAC is holding a competition for meat workers under 25 to win a trip to the IFFA Meat Vision Conference in Frankfurt. The prize includes return flights to Frankfurt, 5 nights accommodation and $1,000 spending money.


This is a great competition that could be used to encourage and reward young employees (under 25) in our industry. The prize is a paid trip to the IFFA Trade Fair in Europe which is one of the great meat industry trade fairs and conferences.

The prize for this competition represents a unique opportunity to expose a young up and coming employee to all that is new in the industry. So take a look around your staff and identify those young employees who you would like to see encouraged to build a career in our industry.

Click here for more information on the competition on the MINTRAC website.

Click here for more infomration about IFFA on the official IFFA website.

FDF03 Review – Food Safety and Food Science and Technology

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009

AgriFood Skills Australia logoThe Food Science and Technology Qualifications are available for review on the AgriFood Skills Australia website.

The Food Safety and Food Safety Audit deadline for response is 7 February 2010.

The Food Science and Technology units (new units, first time in national training package) have a deadline for response of 16 February 2010.

Please add these two items to any meeting agendas of relevance, for your discussions and awareness raising.


Related Coverage:

FDF03 Food Processing Training Package Review Update: Retail Baking.
Industry Feedback for Validation Draft New Food Processing Training Package – Urgent – deadline: 25 Sept.

WAI Cert IV Food Processing Science and Technology Evening Classes Available 2010

Monday, December 21st, 2009

Information PDF thumbnailWilliam Angliss Institute is now offering evening and Saturday classes in Certificate IV in Food Processing Science and Technology.

Contact Colin Garrett on (03) 9606 2167 for more information.

Northern Business Achievment Awards – Food Processing Winners!

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009
Choclatier Winners

Chocolatier staff are presented their award.
Chris' Greek Dips and Yogurt Winners

Chris’ Greek Dips and Yogurt staff are presented their award.

At the recent Northern Business Achievement Awards, the food processing industry captured two of the five major awards, from a pool of 14 local government nominated finalists.

These were the City of Banyule nominees, Chocolatier, who won the Human Resources Award “For Outstanding Human Resource Management”, and City of Whittlesea nominees, Chris’ Greek Dips and Yoghurt who won the major annual award for ‘Business of the Year’ for Business Excellence.  Another speaker on the morning was the eloquent Cam Hines, whose company Mountain Goat Brewery was nominated for the awards by the City of Yarra. He explained that the GFC proved to be a tough yet salutatory moment in the business’ development, to take stock, analyse core business activities and make changes to powerfully improve the business model. Now they cannot keep up with demand, and must brew in additional facilities hired from other companies.

The Northern Business Achievement Awards (NBAA) have been created by NORTH Link with funding from the Victorian Government and the support of the Cities of Banyule, Darebin, Hume, Moreland, Whittlesea, Yarra and the Shire of Nillumbik.

For more information or Sponsorship opportunities please contact Mick Butera, NORTH Link on (03) 9479 3339.

An excellent report is available from NORTH Link, “Melbourne’s North – the new knowledge economy”, which facilitates the awards. Hard copies are $20 and electronic copies are available gratis. Contact Mick Butera, NORTH Link,

Congratulations to the winners of the ISS Institute Fellowship Awards!

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

Congratulations to the winners of the ISS Institute Fellowship Awards. Held on Tuesday 17th November at the RACV Club in Melbourne, 23 Fellowships were awarded to undertake sponsored research overseas to access world class training and learning environments to combat skills deficiencies. Recipients will also take part in a mentoring program which will enable them to write a report of their findings, as well as conduct activities and events to encourage skills development.

VFITB would like to particularly congratulate the following winners:

Craig Peacock, training coordinator for Meat Retail at William Angliss Institute, will visit the USA and Canada to analyse meat retailing both now and in the future as well as meeting diverse cultural needs. Craig also hopes to gain skills and knowledge on methods of packaging and labelling for retail sale.

Maria Pellegrino, baking and patisserie trainer from Goulburn Ovens Institute of TAFE, hopes to visit Europe to research mould design and production methods for the Australian market. In addition, Maria aims to explore the crystalisation of sugar and chocolate, techniques with temperature control and the science of humidity in patisseries.

Click here to find out more about the Awards in the ISS Institute December 2009 Newsletter [PDF: 874KB].

William Angliss Institute Awards

Wednesday, December 9th, 2009
Giuliano Panetta

Giuliano Panetta
Prize Winner for his Gluten Free Donut Premix

From the William Angliss Institute press release:

Food Science & Technology Students Wow Industry

Four industry judges assessed the work of Second Year Diploma of Food Science and Technology students at the recent “Student Product Expo” held at William Angliss Institute.

The Expo was an outstanding success.  The students were vying for the Gelita Australia Pty Ltd Award for “Outstanding Achievement in Unit VBP079 – Plan and Manage Food and Product Related Concept Development”.

The judges were:

  • Josh Hemelaar – Gelita Australia Pty Ltd
  • Geoff Cohen – Ingredient Techniques
  • Elaine Conroy – AIFST, Victorian Branch
  • Joe D’Silva – Sensient Technologies Australia

The judging panel found it too difficult to single out one winner, so a dual prize was awarded to:

  • Giuliano Panetta for his Gluten Free Donut Premix
  • Lauren Burke for her all-natural Sweet Potato Nibbles

Saranga Heenkenda was given a special mention in third place for his Rose Oil Flavoured Chocolates with a romantic marketing theme.

In all, fourteen students showcased their products.  William Angliss Instructor Wendy Jarvis, organizer of the Expo, said “Industry attendees commented on the products’ innovativeness, packaging styles and presentation and the fact that many of them had true market potential”.

According to Wendy, “Interest in this event appears to be increasing each year and the product development process is an excellent way of equipping the students with skills that will be beneficial for their employment in the food processing sector.”

Workplace English Language and Literacy (WELL)

Wednesday, December 9th, 2009
Melissa MacDonald, Training Development Officer (Well Broker)

Melissa MacDonald,
Training Development Officer (Well Broker)

From AgriFood Skills Australia

What is WELL?
WELL is the acronym for Workplace English Language and Literacy. It is a Government funded program that funds language, literacy and numeracy training for employees below a certain level in conjunction with undertaking accredited training.

For information on Workplace English Language and Literacy for the agrifood industry please visit the AgriFood Skills-Australia website.

Click here for the official Federal Government WELL website.

View more Government Initiatives on the VFITB website.

Apprentice Kickstart

Wednesday, December 9th, 2009

From the Federal Government:

The Deputy Prime Minister has announced Apprentice Kickstart – a $100 million investment to support two measures designed to counteract the impact of the global recession on Australian Apprenticeships commencements and retention.

Between 1 December 2009 and 28 February 2010, the Australian Government will provide a $3,350 Apprentice Kickstart Bonus to employers who take on a young person aged 19 years and under into a traditional trade Australian Apprenticeship. The introduction of the Apprentice Kickstart Bonus represents a tripling of Government support for employers of eligible Australian Apprentices in their first year of an Australian Apprenticeship.

Visit the Apprentice Kickstart page on the Australian Apprenticeships website for more information.

View more Government Initiatives on the VFITB website.


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