Jamaica Blue Executive Chef wins top gong at FCA Awards

Jamaica Blue Executive Chef, Danika Heslop, has been named 2014 Field Manager of the Year at the annual Excellence in Franchising Awards presented by the Franchise Council of Australia (FCA).

Announced the winner of one of the franchising industry’s most coveted awards at the MYOB FCA Gala Dinner event held at Sydney Olympic Park last night (28 October), Danika was singled-out for demonstrating excellence in her training of Jamaica Blue kitchen staff.

"It's wonderful to be recognised by the FCA and by my industry peers for doing something that I'm truly passionate about and genuinely enjoy," said Danika.

"I'm a trained Chef but for the kitchen staff of some of Jamaica Blue's cafés, the training I give them is vital to their career progression. I not only recognise this responsibility but I consider it a privilege and among the best parts of my job.

"From working in the kitchens of some of the finest restaurants (including Quay in Sydney) to now imparting my acquired skills, knowledge and love of food to hundreds of Jamaica Blue kitchen staff, I'm humbled by the opportunity to 'pay it forward' and at the same time, I'm grateful for what I learn from those I train.

"Jamaica Blue isn't like the typical café chain. It's a brand that's built on the foundations of premium-tasting coffee and classic dishes with a twist. All Jamaica Blue dishes are freshly-prepared on-site daily and made only from locally-sourced quality ingredients.

"Jamaica Blue menus are seasonal and open to individual franchisees to adapt as they see fit for their local market. It's this sort of flexibility in the Jamaica Blue concept that's kept our brand a staple of the industry for more than two decades.

"I relish the dynamic nature of the café industry. It's constantly changing and I like helping franchisees give their customers what they want. We listen to the feedback from our customers and we cater accordingly; not the other way around and that's a key point of difference between Jamaica Blue and its competitors.

"To be recognised in this way for doing something that I love is truly special. I can't wait to share the joy with the staff of Jamaica Blue cafés far and wide!" Danika added.

Jamaica Blue – Australian-owned and operated by The Foodco Group – currently trades through more than 130 franchise cafés across Australia, New Zealand, China, the United Arab Emirates, Singapore, Malaysia, and by end of the year, in the United Kingdom.

For information about Jamaica Blue, visit jamaicablue.com.au or check-out the Jamaica Blue page on Facebook.