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Jack & Anakin’s French Exchange

Jack’s fresh back from his week as a butchery student in Lyon, France with the Q Guild’s Butchery exchange scheme. We take a moment away from the shop floor to get the lowdown on Jack’s week as an exchange student with @maisonmilliat and @efma.cma college.


Jack, tell us about your highlights:

I really enjoyed Skiing; the views were just incredible. I’d never done it before and it was absolutely phenomenal being up there.

Frankly though just being a butcher there was amazing: it is so different to the way we butcher in the UK. It really opened my eyes, and was so interesting seeing how they do it there. I got such a lovely welcome from them at Maison Milliat.


What was your best meal?

It would have to be the tartiflette which me and Anakin made together. It’s comfort food at its best. Potatoes, onions, white wine, cream and really good lardons…! I’ve made it for my girlfriend since getting back home. Anakin used this recipe with me and it’s delicious. A great way for anyone to keep on top of their knife skills too.


What are the contrasts and similarities between life as a butcher here, and there?

How they butcher is completely different to us. Even the way they display the meat is so different. There are so many contrasts really!

  • In France they butcher full sides of veal; ‘French Veal’.
  • They also tend to bone out differently to us, and get the bone exceptionally clean.
  • They put more fat in sausages. In France the sausages are very simple with just a little seasoning.
  • Beef joints are tied differently, using the typical French knots.
  • The butchers sell many different products such as Rosbif, snails, tripe, andouille de guémené, which is most commonly produced in Brittany but I noticed Anakin’s butchery producing and selling it too.

I’m not sure how well a smoked chitterling sausage would sell in West Yorkshire, but perhaps if we get a few customers asking for it, we’ll give it a whirl!


What’s your favourite new phrase

“J’aime beaucoup le ski. Mais ça ne m’aime pas beaucoup”… you can probably work out what that means without google translate…


What do you wish you had packed to take with you?

Anakin really liked the T bone steaks we did.


Best souvenir?



Funniest misunderstanding from your time over there?

The toilet situation… Let’s just say it wasn’t a flushing toilet and I wasn’t used to using hay!


Tips for next year’s exchange students?

  • Learn your French!
  • I was pretty nervous before, but the exchange is something I’m so chuffed I’ve done.
  • When you get there just get stuck in. It’s a real privilege to be able to do this kind of thing. I probably sound all old and wise, but seriously… just give it a go.


Best moment there?

Meeting Anakin’s family, they were so warm and welcoming.

We took Anakin to see Leeds United (win) on his week over here, and he definitely enjoyed the atmosphere at Elland Road when we beat Preston. He’s an awesome butcher and a great person to spend a couple of weeks with. Lots of customers came in to practise their French on him which was pretty cool.