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Graduate to sinks teeth into business venture

Tuesday, 5 December 2006

Meat retailing qualification enables graduate to sink teeth into business venture

Like any businessman worth his salt, Manukau Institute of Technology student Ateeq Khan knows a good opportunity when he spots it.

Having already established a unique business manufacturing alcohol-free Halal perfumes after arriving in New Zealand from India four years ago, Ateeq is about to embark on another innovative venture.

Now Ateeq plans to prepare and supply ready-to-eat Halal meals based on traditional Indian recipes and says the MIT Certificate in Retail Butchery he has just completed has equipped him with essential skills to run the new business.

“The course was excellent and I learnt how to select and prepare the best cuts of meat to use in my meals,” says Ateeq, who lives in Mangere.

Although he has a background in the pharmaceutical industry, having worked for major firms in India and the Middle East, Ateeq has always had a passion for cooking.

“Since I have a passion for food and the quality of New Zealand meat is excellent, I decided to try something different,” he says.

His new business will address a gap in the market for Halal ready-to-eat meals, which are permissible under Islamic law, says Ateeq, adding the steadily increasing pace of life will drive the demand for fresh, but pre-prepared meals.

“As people become busier they do not want to spend time buying ingredients and preparing meals – they would prefer something that is already made.”

Ateeq is one the first students to complete the new Certificate in Retail Butchery (Level 3), which MIT’s School of Meat Retailing introduced in July to address the shortage of professionally trained and qualified staff in the meat retailing industry.

The course requires only one semester, or 19 weeks, of full time study and in addition to learning how to work with meat, participants are able to hone their retailing skills serving real clients in the school’s meat shop.

Programme leader Peter Martin says the short format of the course has proved popular among students, attracting participants from a variety of backgrounds. “The new certificate replaced a similar one year course and we have had great feedback to this new format, as it allows people to enter the workplace faster.”

The next intake for the programme is in February 2007, with enrolments being taken now.

The MIT School of Meat Retailing has been training people for a career in the meat industry for over 30 years. It also offers a 19-week Certificate in Meat Processing (Level 3) and a range of short courses.

Ends

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