The Created in Cavan food and drinks network is made up of members who are passionate about local produce and want to work together to raise the visibility of their superb offering across the county, Ireland and internationally. The network is also about educating the community on the importance of low food miles, food provenance and telling the food story of Cavan through experiences. This month, Cavan Institute Students took part in a Chef Safari with Created in Cavan members to hear all about their work.

The visit follows on from a successful “young cook of the year” competition held in the college last May with 5 Cavan secondary schools.

A group of students from the Commis Chef Apprenticeship Programme in Cavan Institute along with Pauric White their Instructor and Michelle Marron, Programme Manager visited SeanNua Farm, Sheridans Cheesemongers, Crafts of Ireland and Inis Escargot.

SeanNua Farm

SeanNua farm is located in East Cavan at the foot of Loughanleagh mountain. This is a small scale regenerative farm and students got to hear how Aishling, Gregory and Grace provide their local community with nutrient dense food whilst improving the environment and contributing to the creation of a robust farm ecosystem.

Sheridans Cheesemongers

Kevin and Seamus Sheridan started selling Irish Farmhouse cheese in 1995 and they bow have a total of 21 establishments across Ireland. Their main headquarters are situated on the Cavan Meath Border. Students on the day were hosted by Kevin who explained how the business grew. The cheesemongers are passionately committed to sourcing highest quality artisan products and forging links directly with the food producers. The close relationships they have with their suppliers are of the utmost importance to the ethos of the company. Many of the farmhouse cheeses and foods are handmade locally in Ireland and they have a wide selection of delicious artisan produce from all over Europe.

Crafts of Ireland

Students also got a chance to visit Sandra at Crafts of Ireland in her purpose-built premises in Virginia. Sandra’s aim at Crafts of Ireland is to ensure that the rich craft heritage of Ireland is safe for the future by teaching and demonstrating her skills to people of all ages. One of those many skills is butter making and students were afforded a demo along with the stories of butter making techniques from long ago.

Inis Escargot

Peter and his team at Inis Escargot breed, rear and fatten Helix Aspersia Muller Snails. Peter also provides On Farm Training for start-up snail farmers hoping to tap into the high potential for snail exporting throughout Europe. Students were shown around the snail farm and Peter generously gave his time to explain how snail farming works and its potential in Ireland.

The Commis Chef Apprenticeship programme in Cavan Institute is a formal structured two year education and training programme, incorporating periods of off the job training and skills development in College and work based knowledge and skills development on the job skills in an approved industry kitchen. Visits to food service providers and producers are viewed as a great educational tool for students. Not only does it make them more aware of the local produce available to them when planning menus, it also gives them a great understanding of the farm to fork journey. Many thanks to all the people who made this safari possible.


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