Education, Training and Accreditation for the Poultry Industry

Temperton Fellowship Report 9: With less students entering poultry education but with a dramatic rise in life-long learning, in CPD, in formal and informal training and in the proper validation of these, this report considers why these changes have occurred, assesses in depth the current situation, and looks at the needs of the industry

Year of Publication2000

The report recommends: The poultry industry must be more proactive in promoting itself to potential entrants at all levels. It must provide more positive information to school careers staff and work more closely with the colleges in promoting available courses. Trade associations should provide individual companies with the necessary materials to influence local schools and colleges and to attend local careers conventions. It is strongly recommended that the existing colleges do not compete with one another for the small number of potential poultry students available, but each concentrate on a different educational level, consulting with industry at each step. There should be just one poultry diploma level course within the UK, which should consist of a valid mix of science, practice and practical work. produced in conjunction with the industry and widely recognised and promoted by it. There is an identifiable need for a higher level poultry science qualification to provide professional credentials within the industry. This could be achieved by the establishment of a BSc (Agriculture) with strong poultry bias and/or a post graduate MEA course at a centre with appropriate facilities, possibly either Harper Adams or the SAC. There is probably a place for a short, possibly 6 week summer vacation, poultry husbandry course at one UK centre. This could follow the US model, using staff from a number of colleges, and could provide a sound poultry understanding for graduates or diploma holders from other science disciplines. To be of real value, this would need to be accredited. The poultry industry should pay more than lip-service to education and, to ensure the future supply of suitably qualified staff. must heavily promote the available courses to potential students and staff. There is a need for a small range of practical commercial poultry husbandry books as an aid to training and education and to provide reference material for those employed within the industry. The industry should take a more proactive approach to training and should be the driving force behind it rather than being driven by the customer, the legislator or the trainer. It is necessary to rationalise training methodology and course content and to introduce a more structured approach to training and verification in consultation with the industry. Internal and external training providers should work through a less confusing and smaller number of overseeing bodies who should make use of more industry involvement in course content. Training organisations should take a more far-sighted view in seeking the most appropriate and economical deal for their clients in the industry. The industry should move further towards training that is formally accredited and validated, so offering employers, employees and customers alike the assurance that high levels of skill are being used throughout the food production process./li> Taken together with Recommendation 8 above, there is a need for a less confused structure throughout the whole of training and accreditation, with a clearer and more standardised approach. Our young people are our future and our skills base is the cornerstone of industry. Central Government must be prepared to invest more heavily in education and in training to ensure that future. There should be a single source of information detailing the sources of public funding, which must be more transparent and accessible. The awarding of European funding should be simplified and speeded up with schemes either running for longer periods of time or more closely following one another. The poultry industry as a body must recognise the need for wider poultry student education and must be prepared to substantially fund shortfalls./li> The poultry industry should promote the involvement of a complete education and training package to improve all possible areas of food safety for the consumer and as the guarantee of the total competence that is required throughout the production chain of eggs and poultrymeat.

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