James Whelan Butchers invests €100,000 in scholarships

Tipperary-based James Whelan Butchers is to launch its own privately certified professional butchery academy this Autumn. 

The scholarship programme will run over a three-year period in James Whelan Butchers shops around the country. The scheme, which starts on 1 October 2016 and is being run in partnership with Butchery Excellence Ireland, is initially open to 10 candidates.

The programme, which James Whelan Butchers has invested €100,000 in creating, has been designed to cater to a demand for young people looking for alternatives to a college degree. Training will focus on the traditional butchery methods that the company has based itself on.

“The Butchery Academy at James Whelan Butchers is an opportunity for us as a company to select and help shape 10 great people as butchers, to share our ethos with them, and to equip them with the essential skills to ensure there is a new generation of butchers in Ireland as committed to their craft as we are to ours,” said Pat Whelan, chief executive of James Whelan Butchers.

“At James Whelan Butchers we have the knowledge and the expertise and want to share these with the next generation of butchers and teach them the art and the skills of the trade, a trade we have dedicated our careers to. I certainly believe that we have a responsibility to communicate those to butchers, either those brand new to the trade or to those who want to invest in themselves and significantly improve their skills.

“We have the infrastructure to create a Butchery Academy at James Whelan Butchers that offers students a unique and rewarding experience, one that is exceptional,” added the butcher. “James Whelan Butchers is investing €100,000 over the course of the scholarship, which is a significant commitment, but I am very excited about getting people excited about butchery as a career.”

The first intake of successful candidates will work full-time across selected James Whelan Butchers shops and be trained by some of the company’s most experienced butchers.
Students will follow an in-depth syllabus divided into a series of modules over the three-year programme. They will work on a continuous assessment system and will be paid as a full time team member during the course of their studies.

“Our single greatest asset is our great team of people, investing in people is the most worthwhile investment you can make,” continued Whelan. “As a company, James Whelan Butchers has always fostered a culture of shared learning, and the Butchery Academy at James Whelan Butchers is a natural continuation and extension of that.

“In our shops you see our craft coming to life. In any James Whelan Butchers shop it’s not just about exceptional product, but also about creativity, flair, communication and relationship building, just as behind the scenes it is never just about butchery, but also about stockmanship, attention to detail, maturation, physical skills and technique, and, ultimately, respect.”

Whelan said that he is looking for candidates with an interest in the trade that are “bordering on the obsessive”.

For more information or to apply to the Butchery Academy at James Whelan Butchers, email info@jwb.ie

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