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A cut above the rest: Butchery program offered at Fanshawe College

It is a career that you wouldn't think to look for in post-secondary institutions, but Fanshawe College is the only school in Ontario to offer a professional butchery techniques program, which it first introduced four years ago.

“There's lots of people out there that are looking for careers that are good, viable careers, and butcher is one of those careers,” said program coordinator Troy Spicer, who added It is an under utilized profession with multiple avenues upon graduation of the one year program.

“Students finish the program and they get multiple offers for employment at once completing the program because there's so many opportunities,” he said.

Simon Plesko graduated in April, and was hired immediately at BJ’s County Market in Delaware, Ont., where he came to the career as a mature student.

“I was working in finance for several years, and it just wasn't really something that I wanted to do, per se. So I was just really looking for something that would really excite me,” he said.

Not only do students learn about the different cuts of meat on different animals but there is also a marketing component to the course that includes selling the product used in classes at their downtown campus location.

“The students take a marketing course in the program, learn all about marketing the product. So…we have our email list, we [have a] Shopify site so we reach out to customers that way and promotion through our social media here within the school tourism, hospitality, culinary arts,” said Spicer.

The business approach added to learning cutting techniques was a big selling point of the program for Evain Desroches.

“I would be interested in starting my own business, eventually being able to do regular cattle, chickens and, pigs, things like that on a regular basis. And then how about hunters in my area, that during the seasons I'd be able to help them get their stuff done as well,” said Desroches.

Enrollment continues to grow for the program which is now offering both September and January start days to accommodate the increase interest. Top Stories

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