The Royal Academy of Culinary Arts is now seeking entries for its 2020 Annual Awards of Excellence (AAE).

Applicants must be working full-time in the UK as a chef, pastry chef or waiter and should be aged between 20 and 26 at the close of entries on 10 February 2020.

Since it began in 1983, more than 650 people have won the award, which organisers described as the most prestigious available to young professionals in the hospitality industry.

The AAE is an examination rather than a competition, and all candidates who achieve the standard of excellence set by the judges will win the AAE.

In addition, the winning candidate who scores the highest marks in each section will be named the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts Young Chef, Young Pastry Chef and Young Waiter of the Year 2020.

Last year, Charles Parkins, commis chef at Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Great Milton in Oxford, was named Young Pastry Chef of the Year.

Last year’s examination required entrants to create15 vegan bonbons, 15 Swiss rochers, 15 marshmallow lollipops, and a 20cm christening cake entremets-style that sat on top of a nougatine stand.