If you’re a student looking for a career in food and drink, or you’re a food-based business looking to hire the next wave of emerging talent, Food Matters Live’s latest Inspiring Careers in Food event had it all.
Taking place in London, the event brought together students interested in a career in the food and drink industry with some of the biggest food-based businesses in the UK.
Held on the 8th and 9th of February, the event was attended by over 200 students from UK colleges and universities over the two days, who were joined by 34 food and drink businesses, including Compass, Britvic, SSP, vertical farm business GrowUp and Budweiser.
“It was an inspiring day for all, I learnt and connected with people with the food sector,” said Olajide Alabi, Equality, Inclusion & Wellbeing Partner at Turtle Bay Restaurants. “It proved there is so much depth to the fantastic food industry. We just need to share more stories and connect, which is exactly what Food Matters Live gave us the opportunity to do.”
Sustainability was a key theme explored during the event, with sessions on creating sustainable new products and a live podcast recording focusing on ‘green’ jobs in a changing world.
“Future sustainability leaders have the potential to make a massive difference to the health of the planet given that the food and drink industry makes up more than one third of global GHG emissions,” said Stefanie Sahmel, Head of Sustainability at Abel and Cole.
“I absolutely loved meeting the next generation of changemakers at Food Matters Live,” said Kate Cawley, Founder & Managing Director at Veris Strategies and founder of the Future Food Movement. “One thing is clear, our future workforce wants to have an impact and are actively looking to work for businesses that are making a difference. The risk in not attracting this future talent is huge.“
Sessions offered clear and practical advice to any of the future talents looking to begin a career in the world of food and drink, with huge brands like Britvic and Budweiser giving insight and practical advice into career opportunities within their business, while the employers were on hand to meet and talk to interested students throughout the day about starting and developing a career with them.
The event also saw four live podcasts on the subject of careers being recorded, hosted by TV presenter and writer Stefan Gates.
“I thought the event was very well organised, relaxed and informal which I like,” said Ben Richardson-Hughes, Food Development Manager at Greene King. “Stefan was a great host, keeping our nerves at bay and kept the flow of the conversation moving. It was great to share knowledge of my experience with prospective students and future new product development candidates.“
“To see and chat with some of our bright eyed nutritionists of the future was certainly inspiring for me, as I hope it was for them,” said Rosie Martin, Employee Health and Wellness Dietitian at Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Trust and Founder of Rosemary Nutrition and Dietetics. “It was a fantastic way to meet and share stories and insights with those working in our innovative food industry.“
February’s Inspiring Careers in Food was the second careers-focussed event from Food Matters Live that looked at building and developing a career in food and drink. To find out details of future events, or stay up to date with food career-related developments, sign up to the Food Matters Careers Newsletter.