With pre-employment education and skills development programs, a partnership between safety training specialists Alchemy Partners and job training outfit Essential Skills are looking to build the food processing industry in Canada.
Promoting food processing
The initiative between the two groups has been christened Elevate Canada: Raising the Grade for Food Processing. The program is designed to build the food processing industry in the region by arming unemployed workers with the skills necessary to enter the food processing labor pool, and grow their careers.
According to Lesley Brown, Essential Skills Ontario’s (ESO) executive director, technology is a useful tool to developing the region’s workforce.
“ESO feels it is critically important to integrate the best learning technology into training to help vulnerable adults get the skills they need in order to become employed,” she said. “By bringing the cutting-edge training approach of Alchemy Systems, we believe we have accomplished this goal.”
Alchemy Systems brings to the table a training platform tailored for entry-level food processing workers. ESO’s educational partner institutions, local schools Fanshawe College and Loyalist College, will receive training on the platform, which will serve as the foundation for the educational curriculum.
Approximately 250 adults participating in the food processing development program will receive income support, as well as relevant processing skills. Funding for the program comes from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).
As the education gets underway, Elevate Canada will determine if involving food processing employers in pre-employment education could create a better-qualified group of candidates, and cut the time and expenses associated with recruitment.
Alchemy Systems CEO said developing a skilled food processing workforce is crucial for the health of the industry.
“We recognize the importance of developing sustainable skills for the unemployed, while assisting our customers in the food industry to optimize their workforce,” he said. “Finding and training good qualified candidates to handle the many jobs in the food industry remains a primary focus of our customers.”
Alchemy Systems provides training for a range of food industry customers around the globe. Its Canadian client list includes Maple Leaf Foods, Kisko, and Leclerc Cookies.