Drinks writer and educator Jane Peyton has become the UK's first accredited cider sommelier.

The Pommelier accreditation scheme was launched by the Beer & Cider Academy in January 2018. The organisation claims that the qualification is the first of its kind in the world and reflects the growing sales demand for cider.

To become accredited, candidates must pass three courses before sitting an assessment where a range of different styles of cider are blind tasted and must be correctly described and identified.

The course also looks at skills such as advocacy and cider and food matching ability.

"Anyone who makes, markets and retails cider should send their staff for Pommelier training," said Jane.

"It gives people the ability to understand, describe and advocate what they are selling. Educated staff are more effective staff.

"Cider is akin to apple wine – made from the fermented juice of pressed apples. The certification programme was, rightly, challenging but now I am an accredited Pommelier I can advocate for cider and enlighten people about its diversity, how to match cider and food, and its sheer wonderfulness."