Students enjoy an ‘exc-eel-ent’ experience

National Diploma Food Technology Students enjoying their visit to Lough Neagh Eels with Product Development and Marketing Manager Cathy Chauhan (far right)
National Diploma Food Technology Students enjoying their visit to Lough Neagh Eels with Product Development and Marketing Manager Cathy Chauhan (far right)

An end of semester trip to Lough Neagh Eels proved to be an enjoyable day out for National Diploma Food Technology students from CAFRE.

As part of their Meat Technology unit where the students have learnt about various types of meat processing including red meat and poultry, the visit to Lough Neagh Eels put the theory into practice.

During the visit, Loughry Campus Food students were able to see the day to day activities at the largest commercial wild eel fishery in Europe, starting with the delivery of the live eels to the Co-Operative by the Lough Neagh fishermen.

Following the process through intake, grading and packing, the students were intrigued to learn that the eels are shipped live to England, Holland and Germany in specially designed packaging which gives them sufficient oxygen and moisture for the duration of their journey.

Following the tour around the factory, students had a sneak peek at the newly opened Lough Neagh Fisheries Visitors Centre, where they were able to view displays detailing the life cycles of eels and scale fish, traditional and current fishing techniques, and some fishing folklore. Loughry students thoroughly enjoy these industry visits where they can see first-hand how some of Northern Ireland’s world class food is produced.

The unique visitors centre was officially opened this year at Lough Neagh Fishermen’s Co-operative in Toome. The creation of the Lough Neagh Fisheries Visitor Centre at the largest eel fishery in Europe was been made possible by funding from Lough Neagh Partnership through their Landscape Partnership scheme, funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Anyone who would like to study a qualification at a college with well-known links to the food industry is invited to come and ‘taste’ what Loughry has to offer at their careers advice evening on Thursday, August 22.

Or for further information and advice, check out their website at www.cafre.ac.uk or follow them at DiscoverCAFRE on Facebook and Instagram.