Food and Drink Operations (Meat and Poultry Skills) at SCQF levels 5 and 6

Food and Drink Operations (Meat and Poultry Skills) at SCQF levels 5 and 6

The Scottish Vocational Qualifications in Food and Drink Operations (Meat and Poultry Skills) at SCQF level 5 and SCQF level 6 allow candidates to demonstrate competence in job-related skills in their particular area of work and expertise.

These qualifications cover areas from handling of livestock to primary meat processing, secondary processing/butchery and butchery sales.

Developed by the National Skills Academy for Food and Drink (NSAFD), the sector skills council for the food and drink manufacturing sector, the SVQ in Food and Drink Operations (Meat and Poultry) at SCQF level 5 and level 6 qualifications are awarded by SQA in partnership with NSAFD and SQA, in partnership with the Scottish Federation of Meat Traders Association (SFMTA).

These qualifications must be assessed in the workplace, and are therefore only suitable for individuals employed in the food and drink industry. They are available through employers, further education and training providers.

Why deliver this qualification

The SVQ 2 & 3 Food and Drink Operations (Meat and Poultry Skills) at SCQF level 5 & 6 are new qualifications for the growing food and drink manufacturing sector. Achieving these qualification will result in well qualified which will drive up industry standards. They have been developed as a result of a review of the National Occupational Standards.

SVQs develop skills and knowledge required to prove competence at work. The SVQ 2 & 3 are suitable for those already competent in meat processing and who wish to develop their existing skills and knowledge — perhaps to support multi-skilling or increase productivity at work.

These SVQs can be offered in any of the following modes:

  • full-time
  • part-time (eg day-release)
  • open and distance learning
  • infill into existing classes
  • evening provision

Who does this qualification suit

These SVQs are suitable for:

  • people working in the meat and poultry industry
  • individuals who are currently in employment and wish to gain a formal qualification   


Entry is at the discretion of the centre. However, a related SVQ 2 or equivalent experience would be an advantage.  


The level 6 award could provide progression to:

  • NPA Food and Drink Manufacture at SCQF level 6
  • HNC Food Science and Technology SCQF level 7 or Management/Leadership
  • degree level study at a higher education institution
  • career development employment in the food (meat and poultry) sector



Centres with devolved authority for approval should use their own internal approval process.

Centres without devolved authority will have to come forward for approval and should contact SQA’s Business Development Team for guidance.

Assessors and verifiers must be able to meet SQA’s general requirements for technical/occupational competence as outlined in the Guide to Approval (100 KB).

How to assess

Assessment of this award will be through a series of theoretical and practical assessments or tasks. Some assessments will be carried out under supervised open-book conditions, others under supervised closed-book conditions.

The assessment strategy does not allow workplace simulation.

The assessment requirements are detailed in Improve’s Assessment Strategy 2013 (356 KB) and SQA’s Assessment Guidance (741 KB) for this award.

Where can you take this course?

Qualification content and delivery tools

Information about the qualification(s)

Qualification Structure

National Occupational Standards

Centres/candidates undertaking these Courses should also refer to the full National Occupational Standards for information relating to the overview and scope.

Unit information for this qualification is available on our Unit Search.

Core Skills signposting

Core Skill mappings are carried out by the SSC responsible for the development of an SVQ. It is a requirement of SQA Accreditation that every SVQ submission includes information on where possible opportunities for candidates to develop Core Skills exist across the mandatory units.

Centres should note that mappings are not audited or validated against the Core Skills framework/units so are not accepted by SQA awarding body as evidence towards achievement of the Core Skills units.

Awarding partnership arrangements

GG6A 22 and GG6C 23 are jointly awarded with Scottish Federation of Meat Traders Association.

GG54 23 is jointly awarded with NSAFD.

GG55 22 is jointly awarded with NSAFD.

Modern Apprenticeships

This SVQ is a mandatory component in the Level 2 Food and Drink Operations Modern Apprenticeship.

SQA also offers the following components of this Apprenticeship:

F427 04 Core Skills: Communication SCQF level 5
F42P 04 Core Skills: Working with Others SCQF level 5
F42K 04 Core Skills: Problem Solving SCQF level 5
F42F 04 Core Skills: Information and Communication Technology SCQF level 5
F42B 04 Core Skills: Numeracy SCQF level 5

Information about delivery, assessment, quality assurance and support material

Assessment strategy

Assessor's guidelines

Candidate Guidance and Portfolio

Useful links

Skills Development Scotland Logo National Skills Academy Food and Drink logo