DuPont Consumer Finishes, with its Teflon non-stick coating systems for cookware and bakeware, is launching a new national award scheme to recognise excellence among the chefs, home economists and food technologists of the future.
Launched at the Housewares Conference and Innovation Awards last month, the Diamond Standard Awards programme will be open to teams of students aged 17 to 21 studying food technology, cookery, or catering at A level or further education colleges throughout Scotland, Wales and England.
The new awards represent a major commitment from DuPont, which discovered the fluoropolymer used in non-stick coatings, to support the highest levels of achievement amongst British food and catering students.
The substantial prize money will be shared by the schools as well as students on the regional finalist teams and national winning team. As such, says DuPont, the Diamond Standard Awards are set to become a fixture in the school calendar for UK academic programmes. In addition to the title, winners will receive a quantity of cookware and bakeware with Teflon coating systems for their teaching kitchens.
An independent panel of judges will be created, comprising food technology specialists, retailers, and housewares industry leaders, and chaired by celebrity chef Lesley Waters.
The Diamond Standard Awards have been so named not only to reflect the quality associated with Teflon but also to commemorate the awards’ 2012 inaugural year, which coincides with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
“In the year of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the concept of the Diamond Standard Awards is very appropriate,” commented Wilbert Broeksmit, marketing manager for DuPont Consumer Finishes in Europe. “These awards continue our commitment to community activities and investments in education. The Diamond Standard Awards will recognise and reward the highest levels of attainment amongst young students aged 17 to 21 and will communicate our brand values of innovation and creativity to a wide audience.
“Alongside these aspirations, the awards will offer excellent exposure for the DuPont Teflon brand, driving sales growth for the benefit of our customers and our licensees.”
The 2012/2013 awards theme is focused on the health benefits of cooking and baking with non-stick products as well as on an athlete’s need for a high-nutrition and high-energy diet. Entrants will be asked to design a three-course menu for an athlete the day before a major competition. The judging criteria will also reinforce best practices and encourage young people to infuse innovation and creativity into food technology.
The awards will be promoted to schools from June 2012 and, via six regional heats, will culminate in a national showdown between the regional finalists to select a winner. This will be held early in 2013, and the regional finalists and national champions will receive their cheques and custom-etched Tiffany crystal trophies.
The awards will have the involvement of the British Nutrition Foundation and the Design & Technology Trade Association, as well as media partners and DuPont Teflon brand licensees.