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A brief history of the British Culinary Federation

The British Culinary Federation, world Association of Chef Societies national member has been founded on a partnership between the Chefs and Cooks Circle and the Midlands Association of Chefs who, between them have over 85 years of experience in the industry.

The BCF is the only internationally recognised Chefs organisation for England.


We are now one of the largest associations in the United Kingdom and our membership is spread throughout the country in hotels, restaurants, contract catering, colleges and the Armed Services. We also have members in Canada, South Africa, Germany, Malta and the USA – in fact, in most countries around the world!

A brief history

The formation of the British Culinary Federation, the national member of the World Association of Chefs’ Societies, is the result of the Midlands Association of Chefs and the Chefs & Cooks Circle joining together. The Chefs & Cooks Circle was the most senior chefs’ association, founded in 1948 and the Midlands Association of Chefs was an immediate success story, following its foundation in 1978.


2005 was a historic time for both associations who shared 85 years of experience in the industry. The coming together of two associations to form the British Culinary Federation was a great step forward for all our members and has ensured that we face the future with strength and confidence.


Both founder associations shared a commitment to achievement, training and quality and a rich tradition of competition. We are now pursuing those goals with even more vigour than before. Joining together has strengthened existing membership, increased opportunities and increased the number of events and competitions for members.


We are now one of the largest associations in the United Kingdom with the responsibility for England’s National Culinary Team at both senior and junior level.  Our membership is spread throughout all sectors of the industry, both in the UK and abroad.


We aim to promote culinary skills throughout the industry and protect the interests of our membership. We are available to support and gain recognition for our members as highly skilled professionals within the hospitality industry and can provide information at all levels of the profession. To help us achieve this, we liaise with examining bodies and other educational and vocational establishments in relation to the culinary arts.


We raise funds and can help provide scholarships to help student and trainee chefs to compete, work or study abroad.  We have established an agreement with Les Toques Blanches Lyonnaises which gives member chefs the opportunity to work in some of the leading restaurants in Lyon.


The British Culinary Federation has very strong links with the industry and its ties include schools, colleges and the support of an expanding number of professional supply companies.  It is also involved in many competitions and salons culinaire throughout the country and abroad  and presents many annual awards to industry.

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