Reaseheath College’s Food Centre in Cheshire has proved it continues to operate at the highest industry standards by achieving a globally recognised Grade A (Issue 7) certification for food safety from the British Retail Consortium. The college remains the first and only educational institution in Britain to achieve this latest benchmark for best practice in food manufacture.

The quality mark was approved after an exacting two day food safety audit of processes and procedures showed that Reaseheath’s food manufacturing systems continue to operate under highly controlled conditions and to the highest industry standards. Areas inspected included food safety procedures, cleanliness of the facility and the traceability of food ingredients, with the auditor commenting on the high level of knowledge and commitment of our staff and students.

The successful bid was led by Reaseheath’s newly appointed Processing Halls Manager Mike Bennett, who said: “The team has worked extremely hard to ensure we can deliver the best possible service to our students and local businesses and should be congratulated on their success. Thanks to their hard work, we can ensure the ever changing standards followed within industry are replicated in a controlled learning environment.”

Reaseheath’s £7 million Food Centre was opened in 2011 and remains one of the best equipped food processing teaching and practical facilities in Europe. Built to exacting standards and staffed by a team of specialist food technologists recruited directly from the food industry, the centre has dairy processing halls and production areas for butchery, bakery, cake design and confectionery.

Many local, national and international food and drink manufacturers use the facilities for new product development, technical advice or staff training. These partnerships lead to work experience and job opportunities for the college’s food technology students. The college offers full time degrees and diplomas plus training sessions to members of the public which include cake decoration, HACCP and food safety.