June 6th, 2013
Secondary students bake with Graham Heaven
Graham Heaven is passionate about baking. In fact he is so dedicated to passing on the knowledge, skills and enjoyment of baking, that twice a year he opens the doors of the Napier based Plant & Food Research bakery to senior high school students.
Most recently, seventeen Year 11 students from Wairoa College in Hawkes Bay were invited for a day of baking experience – showing them inside a commercial kitchen for the first time and exposing them to what a career in baking is really like.
“The students loved having the baked items to take home and they really got a lot of learning out of the day,” says Shelley Murphy, the accompanying teacher from Wairoa College.
Graham, who works as a tutor and assessor for training provider Plant & Food Research, funds the open days himself, providing ingredients and sharing over 40 years’ worth of baking knowledge.
Competenz Baking Specialist Peter Rood and Account Manager Wayne Carpendale supported Graham on the day. Peter ran a cake making tutorial where each student crafted their very own black forest gâteau.
In the 1970’s, Graham, who has been baking all his life, opened the first of his six Heavens’ Bakeries with his wife Denise. Their sons have since come into the business, and the baking spirit encompasses three generations of the Heaven family –grandson Sam Heaven won the Rising Young Baker competition at the Fine Food New Zealand show last year.
With Graham’s enthusiasm and ability to provide opportunities like these baking open days, and with the support of Competenz, it is hoped more young students will consider the baking industry as a viable career option. “The future of baking lies in the hands of students who enter the baking school and complete on-the-job apprenticeships.”