Frequently Asked Questions

Why Should I Start a Program?

Starting an ACFEF apprenticeship program allows you to develop the skills and experience you are looking for in employees. Apprentices are trained in every station of the kitchen and can assist where needed. It’s also a great recruitment and retention tool.

Why Should I Start a Program with ACFEF?

As a registered ACFEF apprenticeship program, you don’t need to create a program of your own. You will have access to a list of competencies that an apprentice should learn at each station. This list is continuously reviewed and updated by the ACFEF National Apprenticeship Committee (NAC) to ensure trends and techniques are current. Upon successful completion of the program, the apprentice is eligible for ACF certification, which means more qualified employees at your workplace. In addition, all registration and graduation information is managed by the ACFEF national staff.

How Do I Start a Program?

Once you’ve identified sponsoring houses where prospective apprentices will be working and how to deliver the related instruction, you’re ready to apply to become an ACFEF apprenticeship program. As part of the application process, you’ll need to provide: program summary, list of sponsoring houses and supervising chefs, copy of apprenticeship handbook and curriculum for related instruction. Once your program has been running for 6–12 months, apprenticeship evaluators will conduct a site visit, and your program will go to the ACFEF NAC for program recognition.

How Long is the Apprenticeship Program?

ACFEF apprenticeship programs take two to three years to complete.

How Do I Help the Apprentice Meet the Related Instruction Requirement?

The required related instruction can be taught in various ways, including classroom, qualified in-house instruction and online course. Each program develops its own approach to offering related instruction in the apprenticeship stations. The ACFEF national office staff can help you find the best approach.

What Requirements Do the Sponsoring Houses Have to Meet?

A sponsoring house is the establishment that provides the kitchen space and supervising chef for the apprentice to work. The apprentice is employed at the sponsoring house and will receive regular progressive wages. Food production at the establishment will need to be made from scratch a minimum of 51 percent. Sponsoring houses can be a restaurant, hospital, adult living community or other foodservice facility that has the work area and equipment to support the kitchen stations.

Do I Place the Apprentice in a Sponsoring House?

Typically, you will provide the apprentice with a list of approved local sponsoring houses, and he/she will be responsible for securing employment.

How Do I Recruit Apprentices?

Advertise at local job fairs and visit secondary schools on career day. Contact potential sponsoring houses and see if an employee would be interested in becoming an apprentice. Once your program is approved by the ACFEF NAC, it will be listed on the ACF website with your contact information.

What Costs are Involved?

The cost of an apprenticeship is unique to each program and may include costs associated books, uniforms, equipment, and tuition. The fees that each program must pay to ACFEF to support and maintain the program are:

One-time application fee $250
Annual fee
- 0–25 apprentices $125
- 26 or more apprentices $250
Site visit fee: $250 + evaluator expenses
Apprentice registration
- Two year program $225
- Three year program $275
Apprentice graduation
- CC/CPC designation $35
- CSC/CWPC designation  $125