Meating the need for more butchers

Meating the need for more butchers

TAFE NSW is helping to protect a trip to your local butcher in the Hunter by training the next generation of butchers to meet the continuing high demand for meat combined with a retiring workforce.

The Australian Meat Industry Council (AMIC) reported around a third of independent retail butchers need staff, and employment forecasts indicate the occupation will experience an 11.2 per cent growth by 2026.

TAFE NSW Hamilton student, Keira Juke, is studying a Certificate III in Meat Processing (Retail Butchery) and is employed at Jarrett’s Quality Meats in Lambton.

“The course was hugely valuable, the TAFE NSW teachers had real industry experience to pass on as they had all worked in the meat sector themselves. I enjoy learning about the anatomy as well as the mathematics that goes into it,” said Keira.

“The TAFE NSW teachers gave me a big picture understanding of the future of the industry and it’s that kind of foundational knowledge you need to build a really successful career.”

TAFE NSW Meat and Allied Trades Head Teacher Ben Barrow said as NSW’s leading provider of vocational education and training, TAFE NSW is uniquely positioned to arm apprentice butchers with the hands-on, practical skills they need to develop successful careers.

“Consumers are changing the face of the meat industry with demands on ethically farmed produce and an expectation of food provenance,” Ben said.

“TAFE NSW provides apprentice butchers with a range of skills, from the art of breaking down carcass meat, cutting and trimming smaller cuts to fine artisan techniques.

“Our courses also prepare students with job-ready knowledge in providing service to customers on methods of cookery, and the nutritional role of meat.”

The nationally accredited Certificate III in Meat Processing (Retail Butchery) is a fully government subsidised JobTrainer course for those that meet eligibility criteria.


IMAGE | Keira Juke


TAFE NSW is Australia’s largest training and education provider with more than 500,000 enrolments and 1,200 courses. As an education innovator, we’re focused on shaping the future through state-of-the-art facilities, systems, technology and teachers. Our graduates are equipped for the jobs of today and the careers of the future.

TAFE NSW offers the best of campus-based delivery as well as flexible, online and work-based learning. Collaboration, diversity and the strong relationships between our locations contribute to and magnify the value of TAFE NSW and importantly, the benefits that we deliver to communities and the economy of NSW.


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