South Otago High School (SOHS) pupil Nicole Sinclair (17) prepares her bao buns for the judges during the regional ‘‘Battle of the Pans’’ competition last week. Workplace training specialist ServiceIQ hosted four ‘‘Battle of the Pans’’ competitions around New Zealand — in Wellington, Rotorua, Auckland and South Otago — over the past two months to introduce secondary school pupils to the competitive aspect of the hospitality industry and environment. The South Otago competition hosted SOHS and Tokomairiro High School pupils as they were able to choose to create burgers, cafe sandwiches, pasta and vegetables, and various forms of baking. Pupils got the opportunity to obtain NCEA unit standard credits through the competition and the winner, 17-year-old SOHS pupil Lindsay Lambert, won a set of digital scales and the opportunity to work alongside a chef for a day’s mentoring through ServiceIQ with her carbonara dish. SOHS food technology and hospitality teacher Jackie Brown said it was a‘‘great way to give the kids a taste of what competition in hospitality is like where they can still feel confident and get feedback to give them the chance to improve their skills’’. REPORT / PHOTO: EVELYN THORN