Worldwide: the Global Culinary Excellence Academy (GCEA)
The Global Culinary Excellence Academy (GCEA) is an extensive and unique training program designed to educate and promote knowledge sharing and culinary talent across the international LSG Sky Chefs network.
The program was launched in 2015, and it was designed together with the Culinary Excellence Network. It consists of live workshops and classroom-based seminars supported by distance-learning modules completed using an e-learning app.
Over the course of two years, chefs are equipped with additional skills that build on their existing experience, ranging from cutting techniques and menu design to management. Formal subjects covered include the History of Gastronomy, Food Science, Allergen Management and Active Management Behavior. Upon completion, chefs are awarded a GCEA certification and a diploma from the American Culinary Federation (ACF).
The participants range from junior sous-chefs to executive chefs, and each contribute insight on the individual customers they serve, as well as their individual experiences as chefs, including regional and niche culinary expertise. Beyond that, though, the GCEA fosters the global understanding of LSG Sky Chefs’ commitment to culinary excellence, consistent quality and standardization. This is vital to the company’s success.
“This training program is very carefully put together. It touches on all the key issues that we face in our daily operations. The training materials we have make it easy to hold a training session in my CSC and help people understand why we do things the way we do.”
Binu Krishnan, Executive Chef in Auckland (NZ).
Part of the GCEA development program’s objective is to build a company-wide network of chefs for in-flight catering. These people also act as ambassadors for LSG Sky Chefs’ culinary ideas, reporting back and sharing knowledge in company kitchens worldwide. The handbooks are for the participants to keep, allowing them to use these materials – along with the leadership skills covered on the course – to effectively manage and train other global, regional and local teams on LSG Sky Chefs’ best practices.
Global Culinary Excellence Academy E-Learning App
The GCEA program is supported by a sophisticated e-learning app. This app allows participants to access learning materials via their smartphone, tablet, or a web interface. This supports continuous learning and knowledge exchange, giving them easy access to the modules and training materials, including training videos, at their convenience. The app also covers questions that can be evaluated to monitor progress. Gamification elements such as competitive quizzes and games increase motivation and make learning fun. By including quizzes on issues such as allergies, special needs, and other topics relevant to their daily work, we can help our chefs to stay up to date, and this has a direct impact on product quality. The culinary training app is central to scaling the academy worldwide.
“This program has done a great job of bringing together so many different cultures and countries in one place. It’s fascinating to see what’s happening in Zurich, Switzerland, and then what’s happening in Bangkok, Thailand, how they tackle the issues they face, and compare that to how we do it in the United States.”
Joseph Markey, Executive Chef Design and Development in Dallas (NAM)