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Straight to the Source: TAFE NSW students Journey from  seed to plate ​​​​​​​

TAFE NSW Coffs Harbour

Straight to the Source: TAFE NSW students Journey from  seed to plate ​​​​​​​

Pictured: TAFE NSW Screen and Media students filmed the seed-to-plate adventure, ready to debut a short film at the SWIFF x Hilltop Degustation Dinner on 21 April

TAFE NSW students ventured out with Hilltop Store's Executive Chef Richie Dolan to explore local Coffs Coast growers and farmers learning about sustainable food production.  

The tours, organised by Mr Dolan, introduced students to local producers that will feature in the SWIFF X Hilltop Wine Degustation menu on Wednesday 21 April, as part of the Coffs Coast’s 2021 Screenwave International Film Festival. 

Students observed roaming ducks at Burrawong Gaian Poultry, symbiotic farming at Nambucca Aquaponics, and the science of brewing at Bucket Brewery, experiencing seed-to-plate processes firsthand.    

TAFE NSW Hospitality student Justin James said, "It was eye-opening to learn more about how food gets to the plate, and everyone's passion for local production was inspiring."  

"There is more than one aspect to cooking great food; developing real connections to the product and respecting ingredients will make you a better chef," said Mr Dolan.     

The Osprey Restaurant at Coffs Harbour Education Campus will be bustling as TAFE NSW Hospitality students join Mr Dolan and Executive Chef Carla Jones in the kitchen to start prepping for the event.  

"Orders are in, deliveries will start on the Monday, the prep list will go up with students assigned to jobs, and then we'll start ticking off tasks, ready for service on the Wednesday," said Mr Dolan.      

"I'm looking forward to watching the students see the produce come to life on the plate and feeling the buzz of service."  

TAFE NSW Teacher of Tourism and Hospitality Ian Holdaway said students collaborating in and out of the kitchen with two of the Region's best chefs is an invaluable experience. 

 "Students will see firsthand how a team works together in a large kitchen to deliver an intricate and sophisticated menu, taking their skills to the next level," said Mr Holdaway.  

"This a great example of TAFE NSW partnering with industry to enrich our student's learning experiences." 

Coffs Harbour Education Campus will also host as a screening venue for the first time; jammed packed with events, the SWIFF line-up kicks off from 14 April – 29 April 2021. 

For more information on Hospitality courses, visit or phone 131 601

Media contact: Kelly Lawler, Communications Specialist