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Canada’s Answer to European Hospitality Schools Now at Red River College

February 21, 2013

Canada’s newest hospitality and culinary school opened its anchor restaurant today – Jane’s – the final piece in a 10-storey school where students learn, work and live in a facility modeled after the best European schools – all housed in a fully renovated historic building.

From here we are going to attract people from around the world to Winnipeg,” said Red River College President Stephanie Forsyth as she opened the doors to Jane’s – the opulent 90-seat fine dining restaurant of the Paterson GlobalFoods Institute in the 1904 restored Union Bank Tower in downtown Winnipeg. “Learning and working in a space like this really inspires staff and students to do their best. The institute will attract and graduate the best hospitality people in Canada.”

“As the anchor restaurant, Jane’s provides the finishing touches to a school that the Canadian hospitality industry has been requesting for decades – a Canadian equivalent of the finest hotel and culinary schools in Europe. This is Canada’s answer. The Paterson GlobalFoods Institute combines culinary, baking and pastry arts, mixology and hospitality management with a student residence. At Jane’s, for example, the classroom is the restaurant. Students prepare and serve the meals in an open-concept kitchen, allowing guests to see the students and learn more about cooking while they dine,” Forsyth said.

Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger, who was among the first guests to walk through the facility, says Jane’s and Paterson GlobalFoods Institute will help meet the skilled labour shortage in Manitoba. The Manitoba government has contributed $5 million toward the school and restaurant.

“This new restaurant at Red River College is an innovative approach to helping meet the growing demand for skilled workers in Manitoba and we’re proud to support its creation,” said Selinger. “And for the 140 graduates every year who will have trained at Jane’s and the Paterson GlobalFoods Institute this means practical experience that will help them more quickly transition from school to a good job.”

“The hospitality sector plays a vital role in supporting our local economy here in Winnipeg. I’m proud to be here to celebrate our government’s $11 million investment in this state-of-the-art, one-of-a-kind culinary school,” said Steven Fletcher, federal Minister of State (Transport). “Supporting education and innovation in the trades is just one of the ways our government is working to keep the economy strong for all Canadians.” The Government of Canada contributed $9.5 million through the Knowledge Infrastructure Program and $2.0 million through Western Economic Diversification.

Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz congratulated the college and Paterson GlobalFoods for making another solid contribution to the development of Winnipeg’s downtown. “Jane’s is the newest jewel in the vibrant Exchange District. It builds on the college’s first investment in developing the area when it created The Roblin Centre campus on Princess Street in 2002 and is helping to make this area ‘the’ place to work and live,” Katz said. The City of Winnipeg and Centre Venture contributed $1.78 million.

Jane’s is named after Jane B. Paterson, the mother of Andrew B. Paterson, the current owner of Paterson GlobalFoods Inc. Paterson GlobalFoods is a four generation privately held corporation working in agricultural commodities, grain handling, chemical, fertilizer distribution, flour milling, feed manufacturing, transportation, finance, construction and organic commodities. Andrew Paterson says that his mother, who passed away in 2003, would have been proud to dine at Jane’s restaurant; she always appreciated hard work and youth who were learning a trade.

“When we were first approached to make a contribution to the building it was our company’s 100th anniversary in business. We wanted to make a significant impact on the city by helping to restore this beautiful heritage building in keeping with the rich history of our company in this community,” said Paterson, whose company donated $2 million.

Dudley Thompson of Prairie Architects Inc. led the design team in the restoration of the 1904 building to LEED Silver target specifications and said, “Just this week Heritage Winnipeg honoured Paterson GlobalFoods Institute and Prairie Architects Inc. with the Preservation Award for Excellence. The award recognizes RRC’s strong commitment to restoring the prominent landmark building in the Exchange District to the highest standards for the long-term future. RRC has led by example in urban revitalization, sustainability and historic restoration.”

Jane’s is open to the public for dining starting February 26, 2013 with meals ranging from $10 to $23. Visit the website at www.janesrestaurant.ca.