Lisburn CAFRE graduate’s career fizzes at Coca Cola

Courses offered by the College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE) aim to produce graduates who can meet the challenges of work within the wide ranging agri-food supply chain.

Thursday, 3rd June 2021, 8:28 am
Updated Thursday, 3rd June 2021, 8:28 am
Bethany Gardiner
Bethany Gardiner

Loughry Campus, in partnership with the Ulster University offers three Honours Degree courses allowing students to select an area of study and future employment that interests them; whether that be science, technology, innovation or business.

Bethany Gardiner from Lisburn, graduated from CAFRE with a BSc (Honours) Degree in Food Management and Marketing in June 2016. Bethany identified a passion for a career in marketing, beginning her career with Moy Park’s graduate programme learning as she worked as a Category and Marketing Management Trainee. After successfully training under the graduate scheme, Bethany was employed as a Category Insight Analyst for Moy Park working in a fast paced environment within a skilled and knowledgeable marketing team gaining beneficial experience to progress her career.

Bethany is currently employed in Coca Cola Hellenic Bottling Company, in the role of Category Development Executive. Bethany has been able to showcase valuable skills and knowledge gathered from her time at both CAFRE, Loughry Campus and Moy Park.

Bethany says: “Category development is a role that can be so varied in what you are doing, depending on business needs. Category development is essential to marketing, used as an all-round component to support business operations and strategies within the market. No two days are the same. My work ranges from designing planograms for beverage sections in-store for popular retailers such as Spar NI and Tesco to reviewing and making recommendations to planning our portfolio of restaurant groups ensuring the drinks category and offering is attractive to consumers. It is also important as a team that we analyse what our competitors are doing, to keep well informed on consumer behaviours and trends influencing consumers buying decisions.”

Bethany reflects: “Loughry has a fantastic reputation in the food industry, both in Northern Ireland and further afield. Valuable industry contacts, bursaries and graduate programmes that Loughry promote are really important when it comes to establishing yourself in such a competitive and fast paced industry. The hands on, practical approach that studying at Loughry offers, has supported me in my career, giving me the confidence to present ideas to customers and understanding the theory behind the practices. During my studies at Loughry, I was introduced to the different aspects the food industry encompasses; it is a massive industry with many different job roles available. If like me, you enjoy the business aspects of the industry, I would encourage you to look into the courses on offer at CAFRE, Loughry Campus.”

CAFRE is currently accepting applications through UCAS Extra for places on Honours Degree courses starting this September and a limited number of places may be available through UCAS Clearing in August. If you would like information about Food courses offered at CAFRE, Loughry Campus, please telephone 0800 028 4291, email: [email protected] or visit our website