Opportunities in Food Careers Fair at CAFRE

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The College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise welcomed food businesses to the Opportunities in Food Careers Fair at Loughry Campus, Cookstown. The event offered businesses interested in offering work placements or graduate employment the chance to connect directly with students studying Food qualifications at CAFRE.


Students engaged with company representatives to explore potential career paths and, in some instances, to learn about the next steps in preparing to apply for roles within their companies.

Commenting on the Careers Fair, event organiser Emeryn Erwin-Verhoeven, Lecturer at CAFRE said: “Our careers programme aims to develop the employability skills of our students and support their career planning. We are delighted to have nearly 30 organisations present giving employers access to CAFRE trained students. We hope connections made today will ultimately contribute to the successful transition into great careers within the Food industry.”

A broad range of businesses were represented at the Opportunities in Food Careers Fair, demonstrating the breadth of career opportunities which exist within the sector.

Rachel Barrett from Ballygawley is a second year student studying on the Level 3 Diploma in Food Nutrition and Health course at CAFRE said:

“I found the Careers Fair really useful. The event provided me with the chance to explore the array of career paths and employers out there. Certainly, lots of food for thought as I get ready to complete my months of Level 3 study and decide on a new path for September, whether that’s further study or employment.”

Rhys Livingstone from Lurgan is on target to graduate this summer with a BSc (Hons) Degree in Food Innovation and Nutrition. Rhys commented: “The Opportunities in Food Careers Fair enabled me to connect with companies who are launching graduate employment positions. It’s reassuring to see so many businesses represented and keen to engage with new talent entering the sector.”

Fintan McCann, Head of Food Education at CAFRE remarked: “It was wonderful to see businesses showcasing job opportunities available at a range of entry levels for our students. I am in no doubt that our students, like me, have been inspired by meeting so many past Loughry graduates who are employed in the sector. It’s wonderful to reconnect with our students and hear of their progress within the industry, living testimony of the great opportunities that await our graduates.”

The food industry needs fresh talent with food qualifications to enhance innovation and promote sustainability. If you or someone you know thrives in a team environment, seeks a non-desk-bound career, enjoys practical problem-solving, values travel opportunities, and desires a challenging yet rewarding career with promising job prospects, consider study at Loughry Campus. The college offers full-time and part-time Food courses from Level 2 Apprenticeships through to BSc (Honours) Degree courses. The campus is hosting an Open Day on Tuesday 9th April, book to attend via the events section of the CAFRE website.

For further information on courses and how to apply for a course starting in September 2024, visit our website.

Notes to editors: 

  1. Photo caption – Level 3 Food students Alix Dalzell (Magheramason), Rachel Barrett (Ballygawley) and Erin Hadden (Aughnacloy) discovered the bakery delights offered at Genesis, Magherafelt when they chatted to Gerard McKay (Genesis) at the Opportunities in Food Careers Fair at CAFRE Loughry Campus.
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