Apprentice Zone

Young Baker of the Year 2023

The 2023 competition will be held in Auckland on the 15th and 16th of November 2023 and we look forward to sharing updates on the Competition with you.

The “Young Bread Baker of the Year” is an award presented annually by the NZ Association of Bakers (NZAB) for the best newly or nearly qualified bread baker in New Zealand.

The 2023 competition will be held in Auckland on the 15th and 16th of November 2023.

The winner of the award will be presented with a trophy and a research grant up to the value of $15,000 for research such as overseas travel to look at new technology, ingredients, process or trends in products.

The winner may also be asked to represent New Zealand at the LA Judge Award competition which will be held in Sydney in 2023.

Criteria for participation in the Young Bread Baker of the Year competition is as follows:
• As a minimum – level 3 NZQA Qualification in a Baking discipline (certificates to be provided) that must be completed within 5 years from commencing training.
• Candidates must be no older than 30 years of age on 1 January 2023;
• Candidates must be no more than 2 years from completion of their most recent NZQA Qualification;
• Previous winners of an award may not enter in subsequent years, unless specifically invited to participate by the NZAB;
• The NZAB reserves the right to utilise pre-selection should candidate numbers be greater than the testing facilities can handle

Candidates participating in the 2 day competition will be expected to demonstrate the following skills:
1. An ability to professionally introduce themselves to the judges
2. An ability to deliver a high quality, well researched 10 to 12 minute presentation on a topic supplied a minimum of 4 weeks prior to the competition commencing
3. An excellent knowledge of baking theory with particular focus on bread baking and general bakery science
4. An ability to produce a range of products including lidded breads, hand moulded breads and small goods in a test bakery environment
5. An ability to calculate bakery percentages and product costings

There are several parts to the competition.  See below for the percentage of marks allocated to each part:

  • Practical baking skills 40%
  • Written theory 30%
  • Research and presentation 30% (this includes 2% for your personal introduction)

Please contact the Baking Industry Research Trust’s Secretary, Tania Watson, on 021 165 9949 or at if you have any queries about the competition.