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Butcher Apprenticeships

Introduction To The Butcher Apprenticeship Standards
Are you interested in the meat industry and are wondering how to become a butcher? Butcher training by way of a Butcher Apprenticeship means you will be equipped with the skills to do butcher jobs effectively. The great thing about Butcher Apprenticeships is that not only will you be earning a wage whilst you learn - you will be doing real butcher jobs - but you will also be awarded with nationally recognised qualifications on successful completion of your Apprenticeship and membership of the IoM (Institute of Meat).

First of all, what is a butcher? What is the butcher job description? We’ve all been to our local supermarket or local butcher’s shop and bought meat, and perhaps other goods, from them. If you are a regular visitor to them, it’s probably because you like them! So, as well as the practical skills needed for butcher jobs, a good butcher also needs to have great customer service skills. A Butcher Apprenticeship will equip you not only with the practical butcher training but also the skills you need to know for being a part of a successful business.

As well as working in retail, butcher jobs could also be in the meat processing industry so when you do Butcher Apprenticeships, you will choose which pathway to take so that you can start to develop your career and take it in the direction you want to.
How Do Butcher Apprenticeships Work?
Butcher Apprenticeships are designed so that you can carry out your job effectively, using a variety of skills and knowledge about different cuts of meat. As one of the oldest crafts in the world, Butcher Apprenticeship Standard Levels 2 and 3 will mean you will become part of a select team of people responsible for continuing this specialised craft.

As well as learning about different types of meat, Butcher Apprenticeships will also give you the knowledge of specialised cuts, knife skills and knowledge of safe storage. Butchery is also about making the most out of every carcass so that optimum profit is achieved. Packaging and presentation of meat is also a skill that you will learn.

Butcher Apprenticeships will also teach you that there is a lot of room for creativity in this trade. As you learn your craft, you will also develop skills in curing and smoking meats and also learn about other specialist butcher creations such as black pudding, sausages, burgers and pies.

You will do your butcher training on the job, either in a retail butcher’s shop or in a processing plant, depending on the route you take.
Butcher Apprenticeship Standard - Qualifications & Pathways
Butcher Apprenticeship Standard Level 2
At the beginning of your butcher training, you will start with Butcher Apprenticeship Standard Level 2. The Apprenticeship will take between 18 months and 24 months to complete and on successful completion you will be awarded:
  • Level 2 Food Safety Award
  • Level 2 Health & Safety in the Food Supply Chain Award
  • Level 2 Knife Skills Award
  • Level 2 English and Maths (if not already achieved)
The Level 2 Butcher Apprenticeship Standard is recognised by IoM (Institute of Meat) so you will be eligible to use the initials M.Inst.M. in future butcher jobs.

If you are doing retail butchery, you will learn the following skills:
  • Offering excellent customer service to customers
  • Advise on the preparation and cooking of red and white meat
  • You will learn how to produce three products from cuts of meat
  • Merchandising and promotion of seasonal foods
  • Understand stock replenishment and cash handling
  • Using knives, other tools and machinery to produce meat cuts
  • Learn about regulations in the food industry
  • Working as part of a team to help support the business
If you are doing process butchery, you will learn the following skills:
  • Produce meat to the correct size and weight for customers, nationally and locally and make sure the meat arrives on time
  • Understanding the need for traceability in meat
  • Know and uınderstand your role in the audit and inspection process
  • Estimate yield and costing for customers
Butcher Apprenticeship Standard Level 3
If you want to to continue your butcher training after achieving Level 2, it is possible to do Butcher Apprenticeship Standard Level 3. This Butcher Apprenticeship will take 18 20 24 months to complete and is equivalent to A-Levels Grades A to E. Depending on the areas of butchery you wish to specialise in, on successful completion of this butcher training, you will be awarded:
  • Level 3 Award in Food Safety Supervision
  • Level 3 Award in HACCP for Food
  • Level 3 award in Health & Safety in the Food Supply Chain Business
  • Full membership of the IoM (Institute of Meat)
These butcher qualifications will allow you to describe yourself as an advanced butcher and you will have given yourself the chance of a rewarding career doing butcher jobs and meat industry jobs both in the UK and internationally.

Level 3 butcher qualifications will see you specialising in one of the three different areas. You will be able to choose from:
  • Retail Shop Butchery - learning about customer service, product production, shop management and staff employment and training.
  • Processing Plant Butchery - Gaining a thorough knowledge of the legislation that keeps a healthy and safe procession environment. Managing meat and staff and production schedules.
  • In Store Butchery in a Supermarket - Meeting sales targets, managing stock levels and staff scheduling arrangements and gaining an understanding of merchandising.
Whichever area of butchery you choose to specialise in, Level 3 butcher qualifications will see you in positions of responsibility where you are not only helping to develop junior staff but you will also be responsible for particular orders, customers and clients. You will also be in charge of managing staff such as organising rotas and shifts.
Further Career Progression After Butcher Apprenticeships
Once you have completed Level 2 and Level 3 Butcher Apprenticeship Standards, you will be a full member of the Institute of Meat and you will be able to advance your career and improve your butcher salary by taking on more responsibility.

If you are working in retail stores, you could go on to do butchery manager jobs or even open your own specialist butchery shop, serving the local community. Team leader, managerial positions and diverse roles such as quality control could be the types of butcher jobs you do in meat industry jobs such as processing plants and in store supermarket roles.

As well as roles directly related to butchery, the Level 3 Butcher apprenticeship Standard will also equip you with the skills to diversify your career. If you become a butcher at advanced level, you will also be able to take on roles such as sales, training, production and retail management.
Apply For Butcher Apprenticeships In The UK
So, are you ready to learn the skills and work in one of the oldest crafts and trades in the United Kingdom by becoming a butcher? If you think you have got what it takes to learn all about meat and specialist areas of the meat industry, take a look to see if there are any trainee butcher vacancies. Apply for Butcher Apprenticeships and earn while you learn.
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