The Beverages Standards Association (BSA) offers the only accredited national and international barista skills training courses at its many approved centres throughout the UK and Ireland, and now at International centres. Industry experts predict that an expected 40,000 extra baristas will be required by 2023.
WHAT IS A VRQ?
For the first time, barista skills can be developed and rewarded by an internationally recognised qualification – the City & Guilds Barista Level 2 Vocational Related Qualification (VRQ). A VRQ is a foundation qualification, comparable to a GCSE, but it is usually workplace-related. The qualification involves both classroom-based learning as well as the craft skills required for a professional barista. A level 2 qualification indicates an introductory level knowledge, and more advanced skills may be covered in the future by level 3.
Lincoln College and BSA member Stokes Tea and Coffee have supported community training to VRQ level 2 barista skills. The College partnered with Stokes in Lincoln to run a course for adults to develop their barista and customer service skills to help with employability in the city.
The first cohort of 10 learners were referred to the College via the job centre and have now completed a level 1 employability qualification, plus level 2 awards in both food safety and health and safety. They’ve also completed a level 2 VRQ in barista skills where they trained at Stokes’ coffee shop and café based at The Lawns in Lincoln – with Stokes going on to employ two students from the course.
This was all carried out at the BSA accredited training centre at Stokes by Mike Palliser and Steve Spence. The course provides accredited practical training in barista and customer service skills that supports individual career goals and growth in the visitor economy.
Business growth and marketing manager for Stokes Samantha Pover said: “Congratulations to all the learners that took part on the course. Working alongside Lincoln College has proved to be a great partnership and we’re looking forward to building on the success of our first intake. Stokes knows that upskilling young people with an accredited qualification in barista and customer service helps candidates become more attractive to employers. This, along with boosting their confidence, helps support the whole visitor economy.”
BSA international schools
To support the BSA training centres in the UK, the Association is proud to be able to offer training internationally at its centres in Greece and Nepal.
Working in partnership with Coteco Consulting, the BSA is the only international integrated certification in Greece and Cyprus that educates baristas and catering professionals equally in coffee, tea, cacao, smoothies, customer service, consumer behaviour, safety and hygiene across five centres.
For full details on training, customer events, news and the new coffee shop accolade programme, visit the new BSA website: www.beveragestandardsassociation.co.uk.