Maybe you’re a culinary student who needs their food handler certificate in order to start a restaurant, or work as a chef. Perhaps you have a desire to work in food manufacturing, where you will manage how the food is brought from farms to dining tables. Receiving training in food safety and handling can open up several different career paths for you, some in typical food handling roles but others in inspection and quality assurance. If you’ve been wondering what types of jobs are available out there in food handling and safety, then look no further.
Food is a global and national business, and one of the largest industries in the world. For this reason, there are a high number of employees in this sector, and strong demand for new graduates with food safety training. Here are only some of the many careers available in food handling and safety:
- Product testing
- Cooking in a restaurant
- Food processing
- Food packaging
- Food safety auditor
- Food inspector
Canada’s food processing industry produces almost $84 billion annually. In this career, you will process raw food products into what we see on grocery store shelves. This could mean cutting meat, food batch making and baking, all typically in an assembly-line fashion. Working in a food processing facility, you will have several responsibilities such as scheduling shipments, taking inventory and writing reports. There are ways to move up and increase your salary with this career—for example, if you start in a baking facility, you will often begin as a baker’s assistant or trainee, then move up the ranks.
Food Safety Auditor
To be involved in this career, you must have a particular interest in public health and safety. A food safety auditor will require industry-approved food quality training in order to ensure unsafe foods are kept off supermarket shelves. A food safety auditor will often work in a food manufacturing facility and aside from performing audits, will provide training to employees regarding food safety programs, pest control, operational methods and food production equipment maintenance. A food safety auditor is also responsible for keeping up with current food safety regulations and maintaining organized reports. Audits are helpful for a food manufacturer because they identify and remedy non-conformities, improve employee performance and recognize manufacturing trends.
A background in food safety blends perfectly with a career in food packaging. Food packaging has three core elements: containment, protection and utility. If you are in food packaging, you may be involved in packaging design and finding the most economical and ecological products possible. You will also be responsible for testing and ensuring the shelf life of a product, following government safety protocols, testing package integrity and following company ethics. Soft drinks, cereals and snack foods are only some of the big name food products requiring packaging which you could find yourself working with.