How to become a Baker

Bakers make bread, cakes and pastries using flour and other ingredients.

Personal requirements of a Baker

  • Enjoy practical work
  • Good hand–eye coordination
  • Good health, with no skin allergies or chest complaints
  • Able to cope with the physical demands of the job
  • Neat and clean
  • Good literacy and numeracy skills
  • Good organisational skills

Education & Training for a Baker

To become a baker you usually have to complete an apprenticeship or traineeship in Plant Baking or Retail Baking (Bread/Combined). Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10. For more details, see Section 2. Ask your career adviser about the possibility of starting some of this training in school.

Duties & Tasks of a Baker

Bakers may perform the following tasks:

  • check that equipment meets health and safety regulations
  • check the quality of raw materials and weigh ingredients
  • mix dough and batters by hand or machine, then place in tins or trays
  • load tins or trays into ovens, keeping an eye on the oven temperatures and the appearance of the bread, cake or pastry
  • unload ovens when the bread and other products are baked, take products out of trays and put aside to cool
  • glaze or decorate cakes and pastries with icing or cream
  • order baking supplies from wholesalers
  • operate slicing and wrapping machines
  • serve customers.

Working conditions for a Baker

The increased use of machinery has reduced heavy work for bakers. However, they still have to stand a lot of the time. Most bakers work full time, and they often work late at night or early in the morning. They may also work on weekends and public holidays. Conditions in the bakery are usually hot and humid.

Employment Opportunities for a Baker

Bakers are employed in factories producing baked products, specialty cake stores, ‘in-house’ bakeries in supermarkets and independent or franchise bakeries. Bakers with sufficient start-up money may set up their own businesses.

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