February 20, 2015

20/02/2015: 21st Century millers

First published in Milling and Grain,January 2015

The nabim Advanced Milling Diploma programme has been run every three years since its inception in 2006.  Run in partnership with Campden BRI, in the UK, and the Buhler Training Centre in Switzerland, the Diploma programme aims to:  develop millers of the highest potential; improve the industry’s skills base, meeting its changing training needs; provide a means by which millers may gain a greater understanding of flour functionality; and apply advanced theoretical knowledge in practical skills training.

The testimony of successful candidates (and their employers) from the first three diploma programmes confirms that these aims have been fulfilled in terms of knowledge and understanding of milling and flour functionality but the candidates have also gained interpersonal and other skills through the opportunities provided by the programme.  Furthermore, the sponsoring companies have seen immediate returns on their investment in the work that their candidates have undertaken during the ‘research project’ section of the programme.

Pictured are the four successful candidates from the 2012 entry who were presented with their diplomas at nabim’s headquarters in London on 11 November 2014:  Eva Janning (Hovis); Andrew Groome (Jordans Ryvita);  Kevin Harrison (ADM Milling);  and Jonathan Deards (Whitworth Bros).  A second picture shows Steve Butler (Chairman, nabim Training Committee) presenting the Diploma to Eva, the first woman to go through the programme.


Applicants are now being sought for the 2015 entry to the Advanced Milling Diploma programme. Applicants will be expected to hold significant experience and qualifications:  either the nabim Advanced Certificate plus substantial practical milling experience; or the nabim Craft Skills Certificate plus a good appreciation of milling science; or a qualification in cereal science plus a good appreciation of practical milling.  All applicants should have been identified by their employers as ‘future leaders’ of the industry in terms of their technical and/or operational ability.

As before, the timetable will include residential weeks at Campden BRI (Unit 1:  technical) and the Buhler Training Centre (Unit 2:  operations).  The learning objectives for the former are that, on completion of the unit, given the requirements of the finished product, the candidate will be able to decide on the ideal wheat and process to be used in its production.  On completion of Unit 2, the candidate will be able to present alternative strategies for adapting the milling process to particular wheat quality characteristics in order to produce a consistent flour to meet customer specifications.

However, the most time-consuming section of the programme is Unit 3 (projects), in which the candidate will complete an agreed research project into an area of technical, operational or technological importance to their milling company.  At the end of Unit 3, the candidate will be able to conduct meaningful in-house studies that improve the performance of their business.

Developed in the early years of the 21st Century, in response to member companies’ wish that nabim provide a practical and technical training programme significantly beyond the level of nabim’s other qualifications (such as those to which its distance learning programme lead), the Advanced Milling Diploma has delivered – and will continue to do so for years to come.  The diploma programme equips a new generation of flour millers with the practical competence and understanding to enable and inspire them to lead the development of a milling industry fit for the 21st Century – profitable, sustainable, adaptable.

nabim’s distance learning programme, still known by many past students as the ‘correspondence courses’, continues to flourish across the world.  Assisting the training of millers for the best part of a century, the programme is valued internationally.

Developed and delivered by millers for millers, the programme’s seven modules provide an essential knowledge and understanding of all aspects of the flour milling process and industry.  The study material is reviewed regularly and textbooks revised to ensure that the programme remains up-to-date and relevant.

Enrolments for the 2014-15 course session (leading for most to the written nabim examinations in May 2015) have now closed.  Over 500 enrolments have been received from 26 countries around the globe:  from Australia to Canada, from Portugal to Nigeria, from Saudi Arabia to Indonesia.  During the next six months, students will complete coursework and send it to tutors for marking and comment to aid the learning process.

Enrolment in the seven modules (Safety, Health and Hygiene; Wheat and the Screenroom;  Mill Processes and Performance;  Product Handling, Storage and Distribution;  Flour;  Power and Automation;  Flour Milling Management) will re-open in June 2015.

Read the magazine HERE.

The Global Miller
This blog is maintained by The Global Miller staff and is supported by the magazine GFMT
which is published by Perendale Publishers Limited.

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