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HCC sets out to inspire teachers and their students

Jan 23 2015

The tables were turned this month as Wales’ red meat promotion agency stepped into the classroom to educate not only the students, but their teachers too. 

Two practical sessions have been organised by Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) to highlight the quality and versatility of red meat from Wales and to explain how it can be included as part of a healthy, balanced diet.

An interactive workshop, arranged in partnership with Meat and Education, was held at Dyffryn School, Port Talbot to provide support for teachers of GCSE, BTEC and A-level courses in food, catering, food technology, home economics and nutrition.

Most of the teachers came from schools in Port Talbot, Llandeilo, Swansea and Cardiff. 

“The purpose of the workshop was to provide ideas and inspiration for food teachers on how to include red meat in their lesson plans and introduce recipe ideas to their students,” said Elwen Roberts, HCC’s Consumer Executive. “The focus was on food skills, cooking and nutrition in the curriculum, and core competencies were also discussed.

“Sixteen teachers attended the session which also included an opportunity to learn and develop basic and more challenging butchery skills. In addition, we prepared three dishes using different cuts of meat that could be replicated in school - Welsh Beef mince calzone, Welsh Lamb wellington and stuffed tenderloin of pork.

“We also distributed free resources for use in the classroom, including hygiene information and recipe leaflets to encourage creative cooking in KS3, GCSE and A-level.” 

The feedback received at the end of the event was very positive with all attendees agreeing that the introduction to using red meat to meet the requirements of the National Curriculum was very useful. Others noted that the session was extremely interesting and very enjoyable, and that it was a rare treat to have skills presented to them first-hand. 

Elwen Roberts also visited Hawarden High School in north Wales earlier this month to conduct a workshop for sixth-form students.

She said: “This session was geared towards 17-18 year olds who will be leaving the comfort of their home and heading for University. I explained the importance of a balanced diet and how to cook healthy meals on a budget using red meat from Wales. We also focused on food hygiene and storage.

“The students were very interested to see the different cuts of meat and thoroughly enjoyed tasting the Sausage and Bean Feast and Welsh Lamb Stir Fry that was prepared during the session. I hope that I inspired them to opt for a healthier, home-made dish rather than a ready-meal when they leave home!”

The recipes came from ‘First Degree Cooking for Students’, a free cookbook produced by HCC that contains 10 cheap and cheerful recipes using Welsh Lamb and Welsh Beef.

Elwen also explained the benefits of the Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status awarded to Welsh Lamb and Welsh Beef by the European Commission, and stressed the importance of local sourcing and checking the provenance of food. 

The teachers’ course was free to attend and was held on 17 January. A workshop will also take place in north Wales in the near future.

If you would like more information about how HCC can support your school, send a message to info@hccmpw.org.uk

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