27 October 2023 

Fife College's culinary talent took centre stage at the largest food expo in Europe earlier this month.

Students Leah Carstairs and Chelsea Dick, accompanied by their lecturer Eadie Manson, showcased their culinary expertise on the international stage at Anuga 2023 in Cologne, one of the world’s leading trade fairs for food and drink.

Representing Scotland alongside Quality Meat Scotland (QMS), the students played a crucial role in creating a memorable experience for visitors by serving up samples of dishes that were prepared with the finest beef, lamb, and pork from Scottish producers.

This hands-on experience allowed Leah and Chelsea, both of whom are studying Level 6 Advanced Certificate in Professional Cookery at the College’s Kirkcaldy Campus, to interact with potential customers from all over Europe.

A standout moment from the six-day trip was a prestigious canapé reception, attended by Rural Affairs Minister MSP Mairi Gougeon and distinguished guests with Leah and Chelsea demonstrating their culinary prowess as they catered the exclusive event.

Leah, from Cupar, said:

“Going to Cologne was an amazing opportunity, and I couldn’t have asked for anything better. Working alongside the amazing people at QMS I learned so much and got to work with amazing produce and cuts of meat that I wouldn’t otherwise get to use due to price.

"I am entirely grateful for this opportunity and would happily do it again. This experience has inspired me to work abroad in the future.”

Chelsea, from Glenrothes, said:

“My trip away to Cologne was one of the best experiences anyone could ask for. I met and worked with a lot of amazing people from QMS who made me feel very welcome.

"This experience has led me to become more passionate about cooking. I can't thank everyone enough for the opportunity, I would do it all again in a heartbeat."

Culinary Arts Lecturer Eadie Manson said:

"We are dedicated to providing the best real-world experiences we can for our students. Our trip to Anuga 2023 with QMS, which provided Leah and Chelsea with a unique platform to showcase their skills to an international audience, is a perfect example of this.

“Their participation in this event has undoubtedly added to their culinary journey and hopefully helped them gain valuable insights into the industry.”

For information about Culinary Arts courses available at Fife College, visit our course pages

Photograph: Leah Carstairs (left) and Chelsea Dick (right) are pictured at the Anuga 2023 food expo in Cologne.