Bhutan Chamber of Commerce and Industry with financial support from the Ministry of Labor and Human Resources organized a 10-day training for 35 would-be bakers in NEC Restaurant starting May 9.
The trainees were taught basic bakery skills. They are expected to start their own bakery business or work in already established bakeries soon.
A trainer with her assistant from NLD Institute in Thimphu trained them to bake 20 different varieties of cake including pastries.
With the increasing influx of Indian tourists, bakery is expected to boost in the southern belt. “Since Indians love sweets, bakery is a good business idea because of which I participated,” a trainee said.
Also, since bakery is a part of every major hotel, some plan to work in hotels. Rinchen Dema, a hotel employee in Gelephu said that the training has enhanced her basic baking skills. Earlier, she used to watch youtube videos to learn the know-hows of baking. “Now I am confident to bake varieties of cakes and pastries for guests,” she said. She plans to start a bakery shop if the government funds her.
Bakeries unlike major projects can be started with minimal investment. Sonam Tobgay, one of two male trainees plans to start his own bakery. “But without capital, I have to look for funding,” the class XII graduate said. “We can innovate our own flavored cakes to cater to tourists,” he said.
The trainees comprised mostly women entrepreneurs and unemployed youth from Phuentsholing and Samtse. Two each from Gelephu and Samdrup Jongkhar and one from Thihmphu also took part in the training.
Nisha Rai, the 28-year old trainer, who has a degree in hotel management from Regency Institute of Management Studies in Kolkata, West Bengal, said that the trainees have major scope to to do good business if they put their skills to use. “They are keen to learn,” she said. Nisha Rai. She added that if Bhutanese baked cakes and pastries entered the market, it would curb import from India.
Phuenstholing’s Regional Labor Director, Sonam Tenzin said that the trainees can apply for priority sector lending scheme started by the government to start their business.
The trainees were awarded certificates on completion of the course.
Krishna Ghalley from Phuentsholing