The Chefs’ Forum Continuing Professional Development Conference – January 2021

The Chefs' Forum CPD

The Chefs’ Forum is proud to announce that due to “exceptional” interest from both colleges and industry, the first CPD (Continuing Professional Development) virtual conference will take place from West London College in January 2021. The event, which is open to college lecturers, will highlight the important areas CPD can deliver to create the blueprint for future curriculum.

Catherine Farinha of The Chefs’ Forum said: “CPD is an unbelievably important topic at the moment. Research indicates that learning new skills increases job satisfaction and the significance of CPD is that every piece of development enhances a chef’s CV and value. CPD can lead to new opportunities, support career progression and provide the confidence to take on more senior roles. This also applies to all other roles and positions throughout hospitality.”

With this in mind we have put together a programme of events where industry leaders and high quality, artisan suppliers can discuss both business and development in a way that colleges can commence the development of innovative and highly relevant curriculum content. The programme will provide a mix of interactive masterclasses, blended with sessions to explore the hottest topics impacting the success of students as they enter the industry. It aims to provide the essential link between suppliers and producers with industry specialists and hospitality educators.

Neil Rippington (chef, educator and author) who is working with the Chefs’ Forum to develop and deliver the conference said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to get the right people together to develop something special for the future of students and the industry they are passionate to thrive in. There are great career opportunities for people entering the industry but the skills, knowledge and understanding needed for sustainable success requires more than the creation of aesthetically pleasing dishes presented on cool and trendy tableware. All of the aspects considered in this CPD conference, including high quality, sustainable supply, good business acumen, a great skills-set and a passion for the industry provide a solid foundation for an exciting future.”

One of the featured sessions will be Masterchef finalist Philli Armitage-Matins, a champion of business education for chefs, headlining a session on business studies for culinary students, alongside the iconic chef and entrepreneur, Chris Galvin.

In support of the session, Chris said “In my experience of employing many young chefs, it is becoming increasingly clear that a critical link is missing with basic financial acumen. Today, inspired young chefs are entering a wonderful industry often on the basis of what a plate of food should look like, or the feel of a restaurant without a simple understanding of how it is afforded.

Modern restaurants have to be brutally, financially efficient to survive and prosper, yet managers /owners have little time to teach these fundamentals. Young chefs that are talented and fortunate move up the ladder, often come crashing down because of an inability to grasp financial acumen.

I am thrilled that this might be taught to young chefs in a modern way so that they at least have a balanced understanding of commercial hospitality business.”

The subjects being discussed so far include:

  1. Business studies for culinary students
  2. The future challenges for the front of house
  3. Urban honey production
  4. Chocolate masterclass
  5. Ethical and sustainable cooking
  6. Blended learning – the new normal
  7. Game masterclass
  8. Integrating maths & English
  9. Exploring flavour profiles
  10. Practical curriculum development – industry and education working together
  11. Sugar masterclass
  12. Demonstrating the versatility of sustainably sourced macadamia

To summarise, Neil emphasised the importance of CPD.

“CPD is essential activity rather than an option or expectation for educators. It provides access to contemporary practice and the opportunity to stay up to date with changing trends and innovation. Through regular CDP, lecturers will enhance their knowledge and skills so that they can pass this on to learners through their teaching and engagement. They will become more effective and naturally generate a deeper interest in the profession, whilst developing a sense of achievement and personal benefit. The networking opportunities CPD presents are so valuable and bring education and the industry much closer together. Lecturers need to embrace the opportunity and not see CPD as a tick-box exercise for HR departments or Ofsted Inspections.”

Signed up speakers and presenters so far include:

CPD Conference over 4 days:

14th January 2021 Session Title Delivered by Time
Patisserie / Chocolate Masterclass Biju Joshwa 14:30 – 15:30
Business Studies for Culinary Students Neil Rippington / Chris Galvin / Philli Armitage-Mattin 15:30 – 16:30
Front-of house masterclass Peter Avis 16:30 – 17:30


15th January 2021 Session Title


Delivered by




An Ethical and Sustainable Future from the Sustainable Restaurant Association’s Chef of the Year 2019/20


Deri Reed –
The Ethical Chef
14:30 – 15:30
A sugar masterclass – the art of working with sugar Jamie Houghton, Le Manoir aux quat’saisons. Winner – UK Pastry Open 2017 (Member of the Coupe de Monde UK Team) 15:30 – 16:30
Game Masterclass – Celebrating Great British Game. Curtis Pitts Deer
16:30 – 17:30


21st January 2021 Session Title


Delivered by




Nutcellers – Macadamia Nuts


Andrew Emmott 14:30 – 15:30
Integrating Maths and English into the catering curriculum


Neil Rippington 15:30 – 16:30
Bermondsey Street Bees – An introduction to working with this award winning, artisan honey and tasting masterclass Sarah Wyndham Lewis, Honey Sommelier 16:30 – 17:30


22nd January 2021 Session Title Delivered by Time
Koppert Cress

A session exploring the unique flavour profiles of cresses and leaves and their use in innovative recipes

Paul Da Costa Greaves 14:30 – 15:30
Practical Curriculum Development –  Chefs from industry and education working together Hayden Groves /
Neil Rippington
15:30 – 16:30

Blended Learning – ‘the new normal’. Sharing best practice.

Neil Rippington 16:30 – 17:30

For more information and to book yourself onto the conference please contact Catherine Farinha