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Valuable labour market research for cooks and chefs underway

New, one-of-a-kind research will look into how to attract and retain the hospitality industry’s most in-demand occupations ─ cooks and chefs ─ in support of British Columbia’s growing tourism industry, a key sector in the BC Jobs Plan.

An investment of $140,160 will fund a comprehensive labour market information study to identify the skills required for in-demand cooks and chefs and outline effective strategies to train, attract and retain chefs and cooks. The study will also look at issues related to wages, productivity, labour as a proportion of operational costs, gratuities and other non-wage benefits.

This labour study is not only beneficial to the tourism and hospitality sector, but it will be an important source of information across all sectors that employ cooks and chefs such as natural resources and health care to institutional employers.

The project is part of the Sector Labour Market Partnerships Program, which is funded through the Canada – British Columbia Labour Market Development Agreement (LMDA).

The Sector Labour Market Partnerships Program helps to ensure that training and education programs in B.C. are aligned with industry’s labour market needs and priorities. This year, close to 20 Sector LMP Projects have been active throughout the province, with seven new projects implemented in the last five months. Sectors currently working on Sector LMP projects include tourism, manufacturing, construction, technology and the green economy, as well as projects that relate to the labour market participation of Aboriginal peoples.


Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour –

“As part of the BC Jobs Plan, the tourism sector is experiencing tremendous growth and there’s no surprise that we need to attract more cooks and chefs. This study is one way we can ensure that B.C.’s labour force has what it needs in order to keep our economy growing.”

Dennis Green, director, industry workforce development, go2HR

“The job duties of the 40,000 individuals in B.C. that fall into the cook and chef categories can include everything from someone preparing food at their first job in a quick-serve restaurant to a seasoned industry executive managing all of the operations for a large restaurant or hotel chain. We are conducting the first cross-sector analysis of this occupational group to get a better understanding of the needs of each industry sub-sector within the culinary landscape.”

Greg Kyllo, Parliamentary Secretary for the BC Jobs Plan

“B.C. needs workers with the right skills to meet the demands of a growing hospitality and food-services sector. This new study helps us to attract and retain quality chefs and cooks that British Columbia will need as our economy grows.”

Quick Facts:

  • The BC Jobs Plan builds on the strengths of British Columbia’s key sectors and educated and skilled workforce, keeping the province diverse, strong and growing.
  • Some of the progress British Columbia has made since the release of the BC Jobs Plan in 2011 includes:
    • Employment, exports and gross domestic product have reached record highs.
    • Over 126,800 jobs have been created, with all of this growth in full-time employment.
    • B.C. has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country, trending well below the national average.
    • B.C. ranked second in economic growth in Canada in 2014, and is expected to lead the country in economic growth in 2015 and 2016.
    • Maintained net-zero regulatory growth over the last four years, and extended this commitment to 2019.
    • Put in place over 100 new non-treaty agreements with B.C. First Nations to improve economic certainty in the province and further develop opportunities that benefit both British Columbia and First Nations.

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