Job Title: Development Chef
Name: Neil Nugent
Brief job description
I work within the Asda brand department at Asda house Leeds.
I am responsible for food development/innovation across all fresh food and grocery areas.
My career so far…
2 years Rochdale technical college
12 years working in Michelin standard restaurants in UK, France, Caribbean and Canada.
4 years in Retail food development, with Hazlewoods (food manufacturer) responsible for the ‘Gary Rhodes’ frozen food range and the last 3 years with ASDA.
What does your job involve in a typical day?
It can vary dramatically, from supplier visits to Press presentations.
Though a typical day in Asda house would start at the desk, sorting through e-mails and admin, this would be generally be cleared by 9am, when supplier meetings and tastings start.
The meetings will take place in our development kitchen, we have especially designed this, with professional equipment and a presentation area.
I often present to our suppliers food that I have prepared to show the types of innovation, trends and development we require for the coming months, I prefer to work with our suppliers this way as they can be clearly briefed and this is supported by a written brief. Often we have 2/3 hour sessions with our suppliers which can take a lot of preparation. Sometimes I can be cooking 3 days a week.
Other meetings involve the suppliers presenting to us in response to a brief, these can be marathon like tasting sessions in which food is carefully selected for our own label brands.
I work as an expert food consultant working closely with our brand managers, buyers, marketers and development managers to make sure our selections are correct both commercially and are customer focused.
This will lead me up to around 5.30pm when its back to the desk to finish the days admin.
I work a Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm ish. It’s great to have weekends off as a chef they normally are the busiest times.
What do you like most about your job?
What skills are required in your job?
How many people work for you?
What is your advice to people looking for a career in the food and grocery industry?
See the job description for Development Chef