Yesterday, revealed some startling comments and statistics surrounding the skills gaps in the Food & Drink industry.

According to the Food and Drink Federation (FDF), manufacturers have never faced “a more urgent challenge” to attract talent.

With 130,000 new employees needed by 2024, the FDF has partnered with a range of organisations to prepare a guide to attracting and retaining the next generation of food engineers, scientists and leaders.

Contributing to the report is the National Skills Academy for Food and Drink, foodservice firm Apetito, Butt Foods, Nestlé, Mars, Mondelēz International and Premier Foods.

Nestlé UK CEO and FDF president, Fiona Kendrick, said: “As the largest sector of UK manufacturing, food and drink has an enormous contribution to make to boosting the productivity of the economy.

“Bringing the right people with the right skills in to our businesses is central – the skills gap facing food and drink is not new, but the need to close it has never been more urgent,” said Kendrick.