Boost to Apprenticeships

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A major drive aims to make apprenticeships in food and drink manufacturing more attractive and straightforward for employers and their staff.

Sector skills council Improve plans to consult with employers from next month on plans for a new framework for apprenticeship programmes. The aim is to make them more accessible to employees as well as easier and cheaper for employers and training providers to deliver.

Jack Matthews, chief executive of Improve, said: “Since Improve was formed and took over responsibility for apprenticeships, we have changed the elements that were causing problems, and now we are seeing an upturn in numbers, but we need a much bigger reform to open up apprenticeships to a lot more people.”

Completed apprenticeships in food and drink manufacturing subjects at Level 2 have doubled in the past two years from 332 to 668.

Central to the new proposal is the introduction of one, all-embracing flexible framework, which can be adapted to meet the specific needs of any of the 10 sub-sectors within food and drink manufacturing, from dairy and fresh-produce processing, through to soft-drink manufacturing, and brewing or distilling.

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