Apprentices bring abattoir success

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A Welsh abattoir business that uses an apprenticeship scheme to create the next-generation workforce has been shortlisted for a major award at the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru 2015.

Randall Parker Foods, located in Dolwen, Llanidloes, is one of three in contention for the Medium-sized Employer of the Year accolade at this year’s awards ceremony.

The firm has 20 apprentices currently working alongside the business, with plans of taking on a further 10 in January joining the 110-strong workforce. Employees from all areas of the company are eligible for a variety of training opportunities, enforcing their lifelong-learning way of thinking.

“We place a high importance upon training and developing staff, seeing it as a route to employing and retaining skilled professionals who can help us strategically move forward with business development and growth,” explained the company’s human resources manager Jessica Bradley.

“Committing to staff and developing them under the apprenticeship framework has resulted in a positive image of long-term, well-paid careers on offer within the business.”

The apprentice schemes vary in their layout, from a foundation apprenticeship in meat and poultry processing to a higher apprenticeship in business and administration.

Turnover of staff fell from 41% in 2015, to 15% this year, due to the apprenticeship training opportunities provided by the company.

Wales’ deputy minister for skills and technology Julie James has praised Randall Parker Foods, alongside 36 other finalists, on their success.

“We have some truly exceptional learners here in Wales and the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru provide a perfect platform for us to celebrate their hard work and achievements,” said James.

“Equally important are the training providers and employers who go the extra mile to support their apprentices. Developing skilled young people is vital for our economy. The Welsh government is committed to training programmes such as apprenticeships, but investment must be a shared responsibility with the education sector, business and individuals.”

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