The Royal Academy of Culinary Arts (RACA) has launched the eighth Master of Culinary Arts (MCA), aimed at pastry chefs, head chefs and restaurant managers.

Based on the Meilleur Ouvrier de France (MOF), the MCA is the UK hospitality industry’s most prestigious award for pastry chefs, head chefs and restaurant managers, and entries are open now.

The RACA said in a statement: “The holder of the MCA is able to prove advanced technical skill and professional ability; accept accountability for their decision-making; contribute to supervision and management; demonstrate comprehensive knowledge of the principles of sustainability and the viability of our food sources throughout the scope of the food chain; demonstrate leadership and support the development of others; and act in the best interests of the culinary arts profession.”

John Williams, executive chef at The Ritz London and chairman of RACA said: “The MCA is the highest honour in the catering industry; it examines the very finest details in service, pastry and kitchen and is the pinnacle of each discipline. 

“For me, a Master of Culinary Arts is a person who strives for perfection in their profession and has the grace and elegance to promote our craft to the next generation.” 

To enter the MCA candidates must be currently employed full-time within the United Kingdom as a chef, pastry chef or in restaurant management and service.  Applicants must also have:

· At least 10 years’ full-time experience in their specific trade (not necessarily consecutively);

· A range of industrial experience at various levels, including at least three years at a senior level;

· A broad knowledge of traditional and modern gastronomy and service;

· The ability to demonstrate a range of their specific trade skills at an advanced level under pressure;

· Undertaken a range of activities as part of their own continuing professional development;

· Contributed to the training and development of others;

· A working knowledge of written and spoken English.

Entries close on 31 March. The pastry chef’s semi-finals will be held in June (date TBC), the pastry chef’s finals will be held on 16 September at The Taste Lab, Classic Fine Foods in London. There will then be a Gala Presentation Dinner at Claridge’s on 5 October.

For further information or to enter the MCA 2017, email your contact details to: