HTA In-Service Apprentice Chef of the Year Competition 2017

Congratulations to Amy Butler from The Food Design Agency on winning the title of the HTA In-Service Apprentice Chef of the Year Competition 2017.


Now in its Eleventh year, the HTA In-Service Apprentice Chef of the Year Competition sponsored this year for the first time by Nedan and AFGRI Milling, was conceptualised by Stephen Billingham of HTA School of Culinary in 2006 with the first competition held in 2007.

Nedan and AFGRI Millings’ involvement in this year’s competition is to further invest in the Culinary Youth of South Africa and to reach a broader and wider variety of Chefs and students currently working in industry.

Nine recently qualified Young Apprentice Chefs were selected to take part in the competition representing their Training Establishments. These finalists are:

Phumlani Mtshali – Royal Mnandi

Ross Hughes – The Belgian Triple

Nikita Fikizolo – Ilawu Hospitality

Thokozile Mzangwa – Protea Hotel Wanderers

Mathapelo Mogoboya – Protea Hotel Group

Amy Butler – The Food Design Agency

Dylon Winter – Luke Dale Roberts at the Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa

Reabetsoe Phephi – Protea Hotel Group

Dewald Botha – Protea Hotel Group


The main objective of the competition, other than that of the educational and fun component offered through competitions, is to expose young chefs, the next generation of industry leaders, to a wide range of quality Nedan and AFGRI Milling Products and to allow them to incorporate them into 4 or 5 Star Cuisine.

The winner was announced at the Cocktail Event held after the competition. This was attended by approximately 80 influential industry members, family members as well as other sponsors.

Selection of Finalists

The finalists are industry based students who completed their final Block Release in 2015 from the Chef Apprenticeship Programme at HTA. They were chosen as semi-finalists for this competition based on their overall performance and marks practically and theoretically over a total of 3 years. Following a cook-off held in April at HTA, the nine finalists were selected.


Judging Panel

The panel comprised of Executive Chefs from leading Establishments, last years’ Winner of Chef of the Year 2016 and the CEO of Philafrica Foods (Pty) Ltd, a member of the AFGRI Group. HTA School of Culinary Art thanks them for their contribution to this prestigious event.

Cocktail Event and Winner Announcement

Each finalist was awarded with a Nedan and AFGRI Milling embroidered Chef Jacket from Maestrochef, a branded commemorative plate and framed HTA certificate and medal.

Other gifts included:

Ready Veg – Vegetables for Competition

Foodboys – Meat for Competition

Sir Fruit – Juice

Anvil – 10 x Gift Packages

Sasko – 10 x Gift Packages

Willow Creek – 10 x Gift Packages

Snappy Chef – 1 x Induction Stove

KEE Ingredients – 1 x Cheese Hamper

MacBrothers – 1 x Grunter Knife Set


Headline Sponsor:

Nedan and AFGRI Milling


Contributing sponsors:


Food Boys

KEE Ingredient


Twinsaver Group



Sharp Edge

Snappy Chef

Willow Creek



The event has always been a great success as it was well supported and the media coverage will no doubt assist in achieving our goals, namely:

  • Embrace and Celebrate the Talent of home grown young South African Chefs
  • Provide Media Coverage for Nedan, AFGRI Milling and HTA School of Culinary Art
  • Exposure of Nedan and AFGRI Milling Products to Industry Partners and how they can be incorporated in up market cuisine
  • To Allow recently graduated Chefs to put their skills to the test
  • Assist young Chefs in profiling themselves and our industry



In conclusion, the annual HTA In-Service Chef of the Year Competition, has clearly established itself on South Africa’s Culinary Calendar and we look forward to hosting the competition for the 12th time next year.

Thank you to all the sponsors and industry guests for your help in making this year’s event a success.

HTA can be contacted on:

011 285 0937



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