Applications now open for 2021. We’re calling out for Cohort 6!

4 May 2021

We are very excited to announce our July 2021, ‘Cohort 6’ program is now open for applications! Whether you are considering a change of career in food, working for yourself, or thinking of selling that delicious home creation of yours, FoodLab Sydney is for you. We’ve created this brief post to explain a little bit about how the program works.

What is FoodLab Sydney?

FoodLab Sydney is a three-month intensive training program that launched in 2019 with the mission of empowering budding food entrepreneurs with the skills, tools, networks and resources needed to become a food business in Sydney or an innovative leader within one. We provide participants with a food business education, hands-on technical assistance, kitchen and safety skills, connections and mentoring, guest speakers from around the Sydney food system and access to market opportunities.

How does the program work?

Each year, FoodLab Sydney runs two programs ‘cohorts’ of approximately 20 students who are carefully selected from a diverse range of different ages, backgrounds, cultures, minority groups, but each with a passion for food. Students take part in FoodLab’s structured orientation and induction, a food business and entrepreneurship course, and an optional but recommended kitchen operations qualification run through TAFE NSW at Ultimo.

Participants join FoodLab by application, and upon acceptance undertake a structured three-month intensive that includes an orientation and induction, 10 weeks online food business and entrepreneurship course run alongside a 10 weeks basic kitchen skills taught through TAFE NSW Ultimo.

Students get access to:

  • Experienced mentors and guest speakers
  • 70+ worksheets and checklists
  • Hands-on and practical weekly workshops on business and kitchen skills
  • TAFE Certificate II Qualification
  • Food business consultation
  • Connection to 100s of local food businesses and suppliers
  • Advocating fair, local and sustainable food
  • Strategic and branding focus
  • TAFE, Sydney University and City of Sydney resources
  • Online videos and content 

Who can apply?

No prior education or experience is necessary to enrol in the program. The FoodLab Sydney program is ideal people above 18 who:

  • Have a food business idea and may be seriously considering launching
  • Have already launched their food enterprise (0-2 years old) and are looking for guidance, strategic support and connections
  • Have a number of different food business ideas and not sure which one is viable
  • Want to kickstart their career in food and use their love for food to make Sydney a better place to live and eat
  • Will be 100% committed to the program and can attend at least 80% of the program dates

FoodLab is passionate about embracing:

  • People from all walks of life, ages, backgrounds, particularly those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds
  • Anyone experiencing some kind of disadvantage in getting a job or starting a business
  • People who live and breathe food, who are serious about starting their own food businesses

When does the next program start?

Our orientation for the July 2021 program commences on the 9th July and eligible participants must commit at least 80% of workshops. Spaces are limited in the program and applications close June 25. If you would like to learn more about the course outline, key dates, FAQs, check out the program here. Apply through our website here or contact Catriona Macmillan at

FoodLab is the perfect place to get your food career rolling, we cannot wait to welcome you into our program!