Food process workers operate machines and prepare foods for processing using a wide range of equipment and methods.
You can work as a food process worker without formal qualifications. You will probably get some informal training on the job. You can also become a food process worker through a traineeship in Food Processing. 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.
Food process workers may perform the following tasks:
If involved in the storage and conservation of grain, food process workers may take samples of grain for analysis, keep records of silo stocks and sew bags using industrial sewing machines. Those involved in grain mill work do a lot of lifting, pushing and dragging. Conditions may be dusty, noisy, hot or cold depending on the processes being carried out.
Food process workers are employed in confectionery, flour, poultry, fruit and vegetable processing firms, as well as other food, beverage and pharmaceutical processing firms. They also work in wineries, breweries and soft drink plants. Processing work tends to be seasonal, in line with crop harvesting times. This means that companies must regulate production to ensure that a range of products are available all year round. In some cases they operate on a reduced level for much of the year and take on temporary staff during peak periods.
A brewery worker produces, tests, packages, stores and dispatches beer in kegs, bottles and cans.
A dairy process worker operates a wide range of mechanical equipment, often from a sophisticated control room, to produce dairy products such as cheese, butter, milk powder, yoghurt, fresh milk and cream.
A fruit and vegetable process worker operates equipment to prepare canned and frozen fruit and vegetables, sauces, jams and fruit juices using a wide range of methods.
A margarine and edible oils process worker operates equipment to blend ingredients for margarine and other edible oil products.
A pet food processing machine operator operates equipment to manufacture pet food.
A pharmaceuticals production machine operator operates equipment to produce pharmaceutical products such as pain relievers, first aid dressings, cosmetics and toiletries.
A poultry processor slaughters, dresses, cuts, trims, prepares and packs poultry.
A soft drink and syrup making machine operator operates equipment to produce syrups, fruit juices and soft drinks.
A tea and coffee processing machine operator assists in the processing of tea and roasted, ground and instant coffee.