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Food and grocery industry launches scheme to tackle youth unemployment

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The UK's food and grocery industry has launched a nationwide initiative to help tackle youth unemployment.

The scheme was originally piloted last year by the Institute of Grocery Distribution (IGD). It helped create more than 10,000 pre-employment job opportunities for young people at 700 locations across the UK.

The IGD has now launched Feeding Britain's Future - Skills for Work Month 2013. This campaign aims to tackle youth unemployment by supporting businesses to engage the next generation of talent in their local communities. It will offer CV tips, interview workshops and presentation training.

Feeding Britain's Future will provide materials from some of the UK's largest employers, and aims to help them spot and nurture potential employees.

Joanne Denney-Finch, chief executive of IGD, said: "The food and grocery industry is Britain's largest private sector employer, accounting for one in seven of all jobs, employing 3.7 million people.

"It's an industry in which it's possible to run your own successful business or start from the bottom and get to the very top - even with very few qualifications."

She added: "For the month of September we want as many small and medium sized businesses as possible to offer pre-employment training. This campaign is about the whole industry coming together - across the supply chain and in every corner of the UK."

Last year 98% of the young people who participated said they now felt more confident applying for a job and more than half have secured a job.