PreGel is undoubtedly one of the major figures in the world of ice cream desserts in general and artisan ice cream making in particular. But in addition to its extensive range of products and solutions for professionals, this Italian firm has twenty training centers worldwide. Their leaders in the United States discuss the increasing value of knowledge to achieve success in these pages.
President and CEO of Pregel America
A passionate advocate of gelato (artisan ice cream) and the whole experience around it, including taste, feelings and social dimension. I come from an established family in the manufacturing and service of gelato for more than 100 years, making many people smile. This tradition captivated me and ignited my passion to bring the experience to those markets that were unfamiliar with gelato. With the support of Dr. Luciano Rabboni, the founder of PreGel S.p.A., I traveled to America to start this project.
How and when did the idea of founding PreGel international training centers arise?
Training has always been a priority for PreGel. We want people to know and understand the dynamics of craft specialties such as ice cream, from the most basic to the most advanced. Since my arrival in America I have traveled around the country giving lectures and seminars on ice cream making. Without knowledge, the industry cannot grow. Therefore, since 2002 it has been a priority for us to create a training center where students can learn absolutely everything, from the history of gelato to the use of technically revolutionary products such as PreGel products. Once it was successful, we decided to implement this program in our centers around the world.
What are the objectives?
We want to offer support to our customers and partners, to future entrepreneurs and students of gastronomy. And we want to always be present to offer the industry not only ingredients, but also the necessary tools and knowledge to succeed.
How many of these training centers exist throughout the world and how many students attend courses annually?
PreGel has 20 training centers around the world. Each of them is experiencing strong growth due to an exceptional learning environment, truly passionate teachers, ideas and innovative recipes … We guarantee our students feel optimistic enough to face their business and professional challenges with greater confidence through training.
What investment has this project brought to PreGel?
The investment was part of a comprehensive business plan, which not only had economic resource, but also vision and passion.
“The success of our students and business partners in different latitudes supports our model”
What is the impact of this training project to the brand image of PreGel and of its results?
The implementation of PreGel International Training Centers reinforces our brand’s commitment to education. We are an international company with subsidiaries worldwide. We can be located in different places, but our ideas and our practices are consistent everywhere. The success of our students and business partners in different latitudes supports our model.
Is there any intention to open new centers? What are the medium-term plans?
We are always open to expanding training by providing new locations that allow students to achieve their dreams in the gastronomy industry. In terms of new initiatives, it is always imperative to do a study before making decisions.
Corporate Pastry Chef at PreGel America
A highly qualified pastry chef with over 30 years’ experience in the sector. I dedicate myself to the craft and display of culinary art, and have, through Pregel, the mission of promoting training in the world of artisan dessert.
How do you describe the type of training provided by PreGel at their centers?
The best word would be versatile. We offer classes at all levels, from beginner to advanced, and in all areas of cold desserts, be it ice cream itself or more premium pastry. All our chefs are experienced professionals, specialists in ice cream and pastries, connoisseurs of PreGel products and experts in balance and recipe development.
In addition, we want our students to receive a personalized treatment involving a more complete learning experience. And of course they can use the latest equipment and the most advanced technologies to achieve the goal of high quality training.
“We offer training at all levels, from beginner to advanced, and in all areas of the cold dessert, be it ice cream itself or more premium pastry”
What percentage of training is theoretical and what part is practice?
We ensure that our students receive theory and practice equally. It is as with a good recipe in which you have to respect the right balance. This 50/50 method ensures that all theoretical aspects of learning are covered before students go through the practical work and can assess aspects such as the sight, smell, and flavor of each product.
Who are the main beneficiaries of this training offer?
In PreGel International Training Centers, we cater to a variety of profiles such as students of different culinary arts, entrepreneurs, business owners, and experienced chefs. In short, all those businesses we serve from PreGel are welcome, hotels, restaurants, shops, ice cream parlors, cafes, cruise ships, universities, institutions …
What does the training in PreGel ITC provide compared to other schools and training centers?
Our curriculums offer in-depth information in several categories, including the foundations and production of gelato and sorbets, basic and advanced, soft ice cream, ice cream cakes and tarts, and new products such as liquid nitrogen, popsicles, and beverage innovations, sweets and confectionery. And something that makes our offer unique is undoubtedly the 5-Star Pastry Chef Series® program, by which professionals are offered more advanced training through the world’s most renowned chefs.
Currently, how important is training in the pastry and ice cream making sectors?
Training makes students gain confidence to explore new ideas and techniques and innovate in their own recipes. Knowing topics such as molecular decomposition of the ingredients and how they interact with each other can help us create the perfect balance of sweetness, acidity and textures.