A new food and drink academy has been launched in Leeds this week with Arc Inspirations, North Bar and Reds True Barbecue among the brands supporting the project.
The Independent Food and Drink Academy (IFDA) is a joint venture between Leeds Beckett University, Leeds Business Improvement District (BID), and the city council to support the growing industries in the area. The IFDA provides support and training for food and drink enterprises, from micro to fully-fledged small businesses.
Guy Lincoln, senior lecturer in the school of events, tourism and hospitality at Leeds Beckett, and one of the minds behind the academy, said: “The number and variety of businesses providing food and drink in Leeds is growing at a fast rate, and the level of competition increases along with it. In recognition of this, Leeds Beckett University, Leeds City Council and Leeds BID have launched the Independent Food and Drink Academy as a way to provide effective and accessible business support – a community in which to share practical advice and facilitate conversation. By bringing together a fantastic network of industry experts and experienced operators, our aim is to share our knowledge and understanding of the food and drink sectors and to support business owners in establishing and growing their businesses to reach their full potential. We hope to create a blueprint for similar national schemes.”
Leeds BID chief executive Andrew Cooper added: “Independent food and drink is a key ingredient in the city’s culinary offer and is vital in driving a unique food offering all year round, putting Leeds firmly on the national food map.”
The official launch was held at the innovative Belgrave Music Hall.