As more and more high school students look to careers in the food service industry, the beef checkoff works to ensure they are beef experts from the beginning.

The Texas Beef Council teamed up, once again, with industry partners to host the fourth annual Culinary Educators Conference, where beef cooking demonstrations were showcased and checkoff-funded beef curriculum was provided.

More than 120 culinary educators gathered at the Texas Culinary Academy for demonstrations and hands-on lab time to learn the newest culinary techniques and trends.

TBC potentially reaches 5,500 high school students studying culinary arts through the conference and inclusion of beef resource materials into their curriculum.

“Every year, more and more high school students are getting involved in their culinary arts programs and consider careers in the food service industry,” said Linda Bebee, TBC vice president of domestic marketing. “It’s important we educate these students about beef and help them step into their first food service jobs well aware of the contribution beef makes to a restaurant’s bottom line.”

The conference was developed to promote industry-based culinary arts to educators in an effort to reach new standards in high school food service education.

TBC reaches students preparing for a career in the food service industry by first educating their culinary instructors about beef and offering new ideas for the classroom and kitchen.

This year, TBC presented the new checkoff-funded train-the-trainer guide, “Beef University - A Food service Guide to Beef.”

TBC chef Tiffany Collins demonstrated Brie Burgers with caramelized onions and sweet Hawaiian baby burgers using lean ground beef, while Russell Woodward, TBC senior product manager, presented the “Beef U” guide and curriculum. The presentation was centered around flavor profiling and pairing.

“Beef U” was designed to train chefs to be beef advocates and provide information and tools to allow them to successfully represent the beef industry.

The guide teaches students and food service professionals the history and background of the beef industry, beef nutrition and menueing ideas, flavor profiles and cooking methods, as well as safe food handling and storage.

With a growing popularity of cable television’s Food Network and its superstar chefs, new high school culinary arts programs develop and established programs expand.

Culinary education remains a focus for TBC in efforts to keep beef center of the plate and top of mind for Texas’ future chefs.

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