Sixteen chefs complete the first module of the Culinary Institute of America/Hormel Foods Culinary Leadership class

(Press release), St. Helena, CA, May 23, 2013 – Sixteen chefs from around the country have just completed the first of four educational modules at The Culinary Institute of America’s Greystone Campus as the 2013- 2014 Culinary Enrichment and Innovation Program (CEIP) gets underway. CEIP is a collaboration between The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) and the Foodservice Division of Hormel Foods (NYSE: HRL). The program’s objective is to teach an elite group of professional chefs how to identify, practice, and master the necessary skills for culinary leadership and innovation.

The educational modules of CEIP were originally created in 2008 for the inaugural CEIP class, but have steadily evolved since that time to reflect changes in the foodservice industry. This year’s Module 1 was entitled “Flavor Exploration and Contemporary Cuisine” and included lectures on subjects such as taste, global flavors, and how cooking techniques affect flavor. In addition the module featured hands-on production of dinner by all 16 chefs, using lessons learned throughout the day. Each was able to collaborate and create with peers from a wide variety of culinary disciplines. “I think the most beneficial part of this whole experience was meeting with and picking the brains of fellow chefs,” said participant Justin Johnson, Executive Chef at the University of Wisconsin Health Partners Regional Medical Center in Watertown, WI.
An entirely new component of the class was a lecture and demonstration of modernist techniques, including hydrocolloids and sous vide principles. Mary Grace Viado Howard, Corporate Executive Chef at The Village Tavern, Inc., found the presentation interesting and relevant, stating that, “it can possibly save money and elevate food quality and integrity as well as consistency in our scratch kitchens.”
The student response to the entire module, which lasted three days, was overwhelmingly positive. Post-module evaluations included comments such as, “There was great value in this discussion,” “…has inspired me to try the techniques in our own operations…” and “…this was crazy exciting.”
While intense, each of the four modules of the CEIP looks at the foodservice industry from a different vantage point, to give participants a macro- and micro-view of their profession. Angelo Mojica, Director of Nutrition at the University of North Carolina said, “I was overwhelmed with the level of detail and thought that went into this program. ”
Module 2, which focuses on Health & Wellness, will take place in October at the CIA campus in San Antonio, Texas. Additional information can be found at

About Hormel Foods
Hormel Foods Corporation, based in Austin, Minn., is a multinational manufacturer and marketer of consumer-branded food and meat products, many of which are among the best known and trusted in the food industry. The company leverages its extensive expertise, innovation and high competencies in pork and turkey processing and marketing to bring branded, value-added products to the global marketplace. The company is a member of the Standard and Poor’s 500 Index, Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes, Maplecroft Climate Innovation Indexes, Global 1000 Sustainable Performance Leaders, and was named one of “The 100 Most Trustworthy Companies” by Forbes in 2010. The company enjoys a strong reputation among consumers, retail grocers, foodservice and industrial customers for products highly regarded for quality, taste, nutrition, convenience and value. For more information, visit

About The Culinary Institute of America
Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is an independent, not-for-profit college offering associate and bachelor's degrees with majors in culinary arts, baking and pastry arts, and culinary science, as well as certificate programs in culinary arts and wine and beverage studies. As the world's premier culinary college, the CIA provides thought leadership in the areas of health & wellness, sustainability, and world cuisines & cultures through research and conferences. The CIA has a network of 45,000 alumni that includes industry leaders such as Grant Achatz, Anthony Bourdain, Roy Choi, Cat Cora, Dan Coudreaut, Steve Ells, Johnny Iuzzini, Charlie Palmer, and Roy Yamaguchi. The CIA also offers courses for professionals and enthusiasts, as well as consulting services in support of innovation for the foodservice and hospitality industry. The college has campuses in Hyde Park, NY; St. Helena, CA; San Antonio, TX; and Singapore. For more information, visit

For additional information or media on The Culinary Enrichment & Innovation Program, please contact Vince Patti at JT Mega Food Marketing.