New TAFE brewing course hailed a success

Queensland’s new TAFE brewing course has been hailed a success with a second intake about to start.

Course teacher, Steve Henderson, said that the organisers have taken on industry feedback about the time requirements of classes and would be much more suited to existing brewery staff wanting to cement their skills and qualifications.

Froth Rookies can

Students will make beer under the Froth Rookies label

“All of the students in our first intake came from outside the industry, and we really wanted to make sure that we were catering to existing employees as well,” Henderson said.

“Even so, halfway through the course two of the twelve already have jobs to go to when they complete the course and we’re confident the rest will as well.”

The first course was run during the day, while the second – starting 7th October – will be part-time, with students having one day of practical work onsite at the Queensland BrewLab facility, and theory classes via Zoom two nights per week.

Henderson said the training provided an exceptional opportunity for brewers to get practical skills.

“There are 17 units of competency across everything from wort production to yeast propagation and running a packing line,” he said.

“We have a 250-litre state-of-the-art brewing system, and also nine 50-litre nano breweries, so the course is very practical and hands-on.”

TAFE Queensland has also recently employed trainer Kate Stuart to join Henderson and John Meehan teaching the course. Stuart has worked as a lab technologist at CUB before moving into training.

Students have access to a wide range of brewing and lab equipment, including density and dissolved oxygen meters, alcolyzers and can seam inspection cameras.

“Graduates will be very valuable to their employers from day one,” Henderson said, “whether in the brewhouse, on the packaging line or as a lab assistant.”

Three beers made by the current students were shown off at the recent meeting of the Queensland chapter of the Independent Brewers Association. They will also be poured under the Froth Rookies label at 66 On Ernest, the training fine-dining restaurant at South Bank TAFE.

Launched in August, the 20-week Certificate III course was the first outcome of the Queensland state government’s Craft Beer Strategy.

The Queensland Government also recently introduced long-promised licensing reforms into Parliament, though was criticised for the timing as the Bill lapsed due to the upcoming state election.

Brewers interested in enrolling in the course can find more information here.


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