A former Senegalese candidate in the first Louis Lesaffre Cup in 2003, this time Haïf HAKIM wore the coach's hat for the third edition of the competition.
A Bakery-Patisserie pupil at the Grands Moulins de Paris in 1992, he then worked as an assistant trainer. In 1995, he set up to the south of Paris as a Pastry chef, and 12 years ago he founded his own company "Aux Fins Palais" in Dakar.
The three members of this team, all from his own bakery in Dakar, trained after work for several months in the training centre put at their disposal by the Grands Moulins de Dakar.
Despite the stress and surges of adrenaline felt during the competition, Haïf HAKIM was very pleased with his team's performance during the Louis Lesaffre Cup Africa Mediterranean selections.
"The candidates handled their stress well and followed the training programme" he explains. "This enabled them to express all their expertise and to prove that Senegal offers high quality products! We are proud that we won this Louis Lesaffre Cup selection round".
Welcomed by a horde of journalists on their arrival at Dakar airport, the team savoured this victory - synonymous with success, both for the team, and for Senegalese bakery. Received by the President of Senegal, the Trade Minister and the Minister for Tourism, the team's performance was fully rewarded and recognised.
"The candidates learned how to work in a different way. In addition to developing a more open mind, they acquired a certain experience and became more professional."
Very impatient to participate in the Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie (Bakery World Cup) in March 2012, Haïf HAKIM explains that...
"we still have a long way to go, but nothing is impossible. We have every chance… The Senegal team will be up to the challenge!"