Restaurateur Luke Johnson, former owner of The Ivy and current chairman of Patisserie Valerie has noted that there has finally been a shift in attitudes towards building a career in hospitality.
Luke believes this is down to Britain’s increased interest in food and a more focussed approach to training.
“There’s this inbuilt prejudice about the service industry and hospitality, but that is changing. It’s becoming more fashionable to work in restaurants and in food and drink. How popular it is among young people matter,” said Luke.
Luke is also chairman of the Career Colleges, employer-led educational centres that allow young people to study for a vocational specialism alongside their other academic qualifications such as GCSE’s.
“Most employers are not aware of Career Colleges yet,” said Luke, who believes that the industry needs more home-grown talent. “For too long we’ve relied upon migrants, which is not a bad thing, but it is also healthy to have more of the workforce here trained in the UK, ready and able to work and skilled in the right way. That’s what our Career Colleges will do.”