History-making experience for Team Canada at world baking competition

Published on February 09, 2016

Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie wraps up in Paris, France

Baking Team Canada returns home from the World Cup of Baking (or Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie) with the unprecedented experience of competing against the best bakers and pastry chefs in the world. This was the first time Canada qualified for the prestigious international competition. The top three finishers were South Korea (Gold), Taiwan (Silver) and France (Bronze).

Three of Baking Team Canada’s six members are NAIT instructors. The team’s other members come from Toronto and Montreal. The competition was held in Paris, France from Feb. 5 to 9.

As part of the competition, artistic creation competitor and NAIT Baking instructor James Holehouse was tasked with creating a showpiece that depicted a Canadian sport. His 1.4-metre tall piece focused on hockey, including a Hockey Canada logo and jersey, along with the Stanley Cup, a goalie mask and jersey from Jacques Plante of the Montreal Canadians (the first goalie to wear a mask in the NHL) and more. The showpiece also had to display the team's sandwich creations.

Representing the Americas, NAIT grad Elien De Herdt (Baking '14) competed in the Young Hopeful category Feb. 4 against four other young bakers. The Young Hopeful category was won by a young baker from Holland.


  • Baking Team Canada secured a spot at the international competition last June after scoring the highest points at the Louis Lesaffre Cup in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
  • The team competed Feb. 7 in a day-long test of their skills in an open kitchen before an audience and a panel of judges.
  • Competitors prepared a series of required breads and pastries, some of their own creations, an edible artistic showpiece made entirely of bread, and, in a show of teamwork, inventive sandwiches from scratch including the breads, fillings and condiments.
  • Competitors can only compete once, but can act as coaches for future teams.
  • Established in 1992, the World Cup of Baking is an international competition held every four years.


Alan Dumonceaux, pastry competitor, chair of NAIT Baking program 
"To me, I was part of the first-ever Canadian team to make it to the World Cup, and that's what I'm most proud of. I look forward to helping our future competitors put in the training to make it back here to compete."

James Holehouse, artistic creation competitor, instructor in NAIT Baking program
"I was so proud to be here and represent Canada and be among all these passionate bakers. Competing in the Coupe du Monde pushed me to do my best and I can bring that back to Canada and to my students."

Clayton Folkers, team technical coach, instructor in NAIT Baking program
"A competition like this pushes the bounds of our creativity and imagination, and we incorporate that into our teaching. I'm so proud of our team's performance and of Elien, our young baking competitor. She's a great inspiration and role model for other young bakers and students."

About NAIT

The Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) is a leading Canadian polytechnic, delivering education in science, technology and the environment; business; health and trades. With nearly 60,000 credit and non-credit students and a 95 per cent employer satisfaction rate, NAIT grads are essential to Alberta’s prosperity. Known for hands-on, technology-based learning, NAIT engages with business and industry in applied research and innovation and provides corporate training around the world. Recognized as one of Alberta’s top employers, NAIT provides outstanding returns on investment for its graduates, partners, the provincial government and the people of Alberta.

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