Monday, April 23, 2018

Schwan's supports youth development at 'Culinary Skills Challenge'

Chief Procurement Officer and local beekeeper Bill Reilly
presented to students about the connections between honey and culinary.
April 23, 2018 — Supporting youth and community, our company recently participated in the Schwan’s Culinary Skills Challenge at Southwest Minnesota State University (SMSU).  This was our fourth-consecutive year being the title sponsor of the annual event, where employees also volunteered their time.

The Schwan’s Culinary Skills Challenge features high-school students showcasing their artistic and scientific creations through hands-on competitions and seminars. Participants compete for SMSU scholarships of $500, $1,000 and $2,000.

Our company sponsors the annual event because of our partnership with SMSU’s Culinology® program. The event also aligns with our community relations focus areas of hunger, youth and community.

This year, more than 200 high school students from schools throughout southwest Minnesota participated. The event competitions included: baking, science, cake decorating, culinary, food art, knife skills, menu design and place setting/napkin folding.

Students who participated received practical information and had opportunities to practice and develop culinary skills through interactions with food-industry professionals. Such experiences help students make the connection between school and a wide range of food-related careers.

As part of the cooking competition, the students are required to use certain “basket” ingredients, which included Schwan’s Home Service's Signature Chicken Breast Fillets. They are also required to present their recipes to a panel of judges and explain the story of how their creation came to be.

Our Chief Procurement Officer Bill Reilly, who is a beekeeper in the Marshall area, was also asked to participate at this year’s event. He led a seminar about honeybees and the connection of honey and culinary.

For the presentation, Bill shared a brief history and development of honey, the health benefits as well as applications and recipes. He also discussed the life cycle of honey bees, including the structure and components of a hive.

Students also tried 15 samples of honey from around the world to compare and contrast.

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