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Our guide to catering courses

Do you grab at any opportunity to host dinner parties for your family and friends, watch food channels religiously to stay abreast with food trends, have an entrepreneurial mind and might consider starting a food business, or just simply find yourself drawn to the hospitality industry? Then why not study catering? It’s a great way to indulge your obsession with food and for the business-minded, a chance to start a catering business. And if you changed your mind, you can still change paths into event management and even tourism. Your options are limitless with a qualification in catering.

 

Quiches, tarts, sushi, salads – what’s your food style?

If you enjoy making certain types of food, doing a catering course will enable you to serve your little parcels of food heaven at weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, parties, bar mitzvahs and business meetings. From appetizers and finger foods to hearty entrees and special cocktails, there are loads of people hiring caterers to create trendy yummylicious food. On most of the courses, you’ll be taught by professional chefs with up-to-date industry experience. You’ll learn about food preparation techniques, meal production and design, service of food and drinks, hospitality, food hygiene and cookery processes. You’ll also stand a chance of being placed in some top establishments such as the Ritz and Claridges.   

 

The catering business

If you decide to start a catering business, there will be other responsibilities involved apart from just preparing food. One of the important areas is event planning as you’ll be required to plan the occasion such as organising the line-ups, tailoring details according to client’s preferences, arranging decorations, sending out invitations and even having a plan B in case things go wrong! Studying a course in event management, alongside catering, could be helpful too.  

 

How about hospitality and catering?

Whilst it’s not that popular for students to combine courses, you can choose to take your catering course with another subject like hospitality, which allows you to cover a broader area. It introduces students to the catering and hospitality industry, where they develop literacy and numeracy skills, operational planning and organisation, financial management and marketing, apart from catering skills. Browse our courses and you’ll find a range of combined or similar courses such as restaurant and events, hospitality supervision, tourism and hotel management.

 

Qualifications

The British Institute of Innkeeping Awarding Body (BIIAB) awards range from Level 1 to 6 for catering, and the organisation regularly updates its qualifications, ensuring that students are employable at the end of the course. You can also choose the City & Guilds awards that are developed in conjunction with industry experts.    

 

Catering for Wimbledon!

The amount of food and drink served by 1,800 catering staff at The Championships in Wimbledon:

·         300,000 cups of tea and coffee

·         250,000 bottles of water

·         190,000 sandwiches

·         150,000 bath buns, scones, pasties and doughnuts

·         150,000 glasses of Pimms

·         135,000 ice creams

·         130,000 lunches served

·         100,000 pints of draught beer and lager

·         30,000 portions of fish and chips

·         30,000 litres of milk

·         28,000 kilos of English strawberries

·         23,000 bananas

·         22,000 slices of pizza

·         17,000 bottles of champagne

·         7,000 litres of dairy cream

 

Check out our Pinterest for some catering food and drinks ideas!   

 

Catering course reviews and other useful articles

What others are saying about catering

level 2 award for personal licence holders

Where: UK Training

What: Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders (QCF) (Booked online with Hotcourses)

by Karen - December 2014

Excellent one day course, Barry the instructor is very good, covers every aspect you need to learn. Test is multi choice. I would recommend anyone to take this course.

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Expert views

Hospitality and Catering

College:  Redbridge College Tutor: Sharon Sullivan Course: Catering Sharon left her previous post as a catering manager in 2006 and started her role as a trainer assessor at Redbridge College. Her first groups were NVQ level 3 professional cookery more

Catering

  Q. What qualifications route did you take to realise your cookery career?   I have the equivalent of an NVQ Level 2 and 3 in professional cookery and over 20 years experience working for Sheraton Hotels throughout across Europe, Africa and the more

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Student Story: Hospitality

Abbygail tells us that the Hospitality NVQ is a good start for anyone wanting to work in catering, having advanced her own ambition to become a chef… Name: Abbygail Gill Institution: Redbridge College Course: NVQ Level 1 Hospitality I started at more

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Related careers: Catering/Restaurant Manager

Restaurant or catering managers ensure that customers are satisfied with the quality of food and service provided. Work in hotels, restaurants and fast-food outlets is classified as restaurant management. In larger catering operations such as a business or factory canteen, hospital or school, the work would be termed catering management. Restaurant managers deal with customers, welcoming them and showing them to their table. Catering managers have less contact with customers, spending more time behind-the-scenes. The manager's duties are also likely to...more

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