Confectionery companies to reap benefits of new UK qualification

Cadbury involved in a new qualification aimed at increasing the number of young people looking to pursue a career in food and drink manufacturing.

The Diploma in Manufacturing and Product Design (MPD) is available to pupils and students aged 14 to 19. It has been developed to sit alongside traditional academic qualifications and allows students to divide their time between classroom, college and real work environments.

it is championed by leading employers like Cadbury and Mullers and will be taught from a curriculum designed by employers for employers. Businesses will contribute directly to the learning experience by giving talks to students, hosting site visits, setting topics for projects, mentoring students and offering work experience placements.

Cadbury will welcome students to its Hillsborough factory for site visits and oversee a project to develop a new confectionery product. Lisa Huggins-Chan, head of corporate responsibility for Cadbury in Britain and Ireland, says, “The purpose of the Diploma in MPD is to close the gap between education and business needs, and to help young people develop skills which employers are looking for. Employers will be rewarded with recruits who are more enthusiastic, more committed and better skilled.”

Derek Jones of food and drink sector skills council Improve, which lead the project team behind the Diploma in MPD, explains, “It has been created to involve the manufacturing industry directly in the education of the future workforce.”

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