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Training & Apprenticeship Award: Andrew Cullum - Avery Healthcare

9th Apr 2024 - 11:41

Andy Cullum is an extremely hard working and caring individual as well as being enthusiastic about delivering excellent food. He supports various groups within the care sector with the goal of improving the foods they prepare and serve in care home settings. 

He has a wealth of experience and knowledge, and he actively shares this with every person he meets whether this is in a development kitchen or delivering a demonstration at the NACC conferences. Andy is extremely popular and widely respected amongst his peers and his support is in high demand due to his excellent work and award-winning track record with Avery Healthcare.

Andy has supported the development of hundreds of chefs through his collaborative approach of blended learning. It has resulted in embedding not only knowledge and craft skills but also supported with group initiatives that have helped change the terminology of certain foods within the care sector.

Simon Lawrence, culinary director at Avery Healthcare, said: “His attention to detail and delivering the exact brief is exemplary, his thoughtful approach is inspiring and the way he enthuses his team to engage is simply magical, he is an absolute joy to work with and we are very lucky to have Andy joining us full time in April.” 

Andy is a highly enthusiastic and motivated individual with extensive experience in a variety of catering establishments. Andy has worked in high class restaurants, residential care homes, retirement villages and has a background of Royal Air Force training.

Andy has strong, positive communication skills thus allowing him to disseminate information to all levels of colleagues effectively within any business. Whilst serving in the Armed Forces, Andy was positioned as the chef for the Prime Minister John Major.

He has the ability and aptitude to work alongside colleagues at all levels under varying volumes of pressure that a business may encounter, whilst remaining flexible and creative at all times. Andy’s journey started when a family member was in a care home, and he was taken back by the poor standards of the meals that where being served and wanted to make a difference. 

Andy believes when it comes to care home catering this must be built around the residents and not the kitchen as all residents deserve to dine with dignity as this could be your mother.

The training that has been delivered has been in a way that is easy to understand and fun. Showing how meals can be served hot, capturing nutrition and demonstrating fortification to improve resident’s weight are examples of training. Training sessions would consist of one-to-one working alongside the chefs so that Andy could demonstrate how to build modified meals into your working day.

Andy believes IDDSI does not start half an hour before service. It starts from the moment you cut that first carrot and cook that meat. Training covers: fortification, diet notification sheets/food passports, the IDDSI framework, cooking techniques, IDDSI audit tools, preparation, storage and dining with dignity.

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