The new captain of Culinary Team Wales is an experienced chef who has spent 19 years in the RAF.
Alun Davies, 38, from Ammanford, steps up to the captaincy having previously captained both the Combined Services and RAF culinary teams. Highlight of Alun’s culinary career to date was with the Combined Services Team which clinched second place in the military category at the 2012 Culinary World Cup.
He joined Culinary Team Wales last year, having taken a two-year break from competitions, and was a member of the Welsh team that returned from the Culinary World Cup in Luxembourg last November with silver and bronze medals.
His first task as captain is to help new team manager Nick Davies recruit and develop a team ready for the Culinary Olympics in Stuttgart next February. He is keen to help Wales compete with the very best and insists the chefs will be going for gold.
“It was great to be selected for the Welsh team last year and now be appointed captain is fantastic,” he said. “I am really chuffed.
“I have previous experience as captain of the RAF and Combined Services teams which can be utilised. I look forward to working with Nick to help develop a new team and will be using my military background to bring in organisational skills and competition experience.
“I am also looking forward to getting to know the chefs, as I am a bit out of touch with the industry in Wales. I am originally from Ammanford and my wife and I have recently moved back there.”
Alun is centre manager for RAF hospitality apprenticeships in Winchester and is currently training 30 chefs and 40 front of house apprentices, with new cabin crew apprentices soon to join the ranks.
He is grateful to have been given the opportunity to work with manager Toby Beevers, captain Danny Burke and the other team members at the Culinary World Cup last year.
“It had been a couple of years since I had competed and it was nice to get the chef’s whites on again,” he added. “I now have the bug again. I always aim for gold medals and there is no reason why we can’t achieve that.
“Having spoken to Nick, I like his vision of how the team is going to work going forwards. He wants to give ownership to each section which is the way I have worked in the past.”
Culinary Association of Wales president Arwyn Watkins, OBE, said: “The appointment of both Nick and Alun represent a major step forward for Wales on the international stage at such a challenging time for the nation and the Welsh food and drinks sector.”