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By definition, food processing basically is the conversion of raw edible stuff into a state that is safe for consumption by human beings, or converting food into other consumable forms either by human beings or animals. Most people engage in this particular activity of food processing in their homes. However, there are people who have professional knowledge on how to do the same. These people are known as food processors. Their major activity involves the conversion of raw edible stuff into food that is in a consumable state, especially by human beings.

Nature of Work

To begin with, the food processing industry has a considerably high number of employees. The role played by the people in the food processor jobs is quite significant as it ensures availability of foodstuffs in every household. Food processor jobs are quite involved as they entail various activities. Some of these activities include baking, meat processing and operation of the various machines and equipment that are responsible for the food processing procedures. In food processing, all procedures are carried out in accordance to specified instructions commonly known as recipes. Bakers specialize in pastries which come in a wide range. Normally, in large companies bakers produce their pastries in large quantities either for direct sale or distribution. Meat processing on the other hand is quite a lengthy process as it entails the conversion of carcasses of animals into consumable food. The process starts right from the slaughter house and continues until the meat is converted into a consumable form.



The actual nature of work in food processor jobs varies greatly with the specific kind of job one is assigned to do. For instance, bakers and meat processors though all are engaged in food processor jobs, are involved in different types of activities. Another group of people that play a significant role in food processing is the food batch makers, whose main work is to operate all the machines and equipment that are used in the food processing procedure

Work Environment

The work environment in the food processing industries varies greatly with the area of specialization and also the various companies. Again, the size of the particular organization also determines to a large extent the work conditions. Some of the conditions however that characterize most food processor jobs include a noisy and hot environment. The noise normally is generated by the various equipment and machines that are involved in the food processing procedures. The heat is as a result of the energy produced by the machines as they are engaged in the various food processing activities. Food processor jobs can also be somewhat stressing due to the fact that there are extremely strict and tight deadlines to be met in the form of orders, and in addition a keen observance of time must be adhered to as failure to do so might result in irreparable damage and untold mess.

Most food processor jobs are actually carried out in shifts where one is required to work for a specified number of hours, after which he is released and another person replaces him or her. The shifts are sometimes quite odd and the working hours for each shift, although this varies, are also relatively long. In most cases food processor jobs involve working over the weekends and holidays, since most of these industries work round the clock. In this particular industry, more than any other industry, sanitation is of utmost importance. This is because it involves the preparation of foodstuff which is later consumed by human beings. Failure to observe cleanliness may result in extremely hazardous results.

Besides cleanliness, people working in the food processing industries must contend with extremely low temperatures that are used to preserve foods against bacteria and other microscopic organisms that can be of harm to the foods. The work environment in the food processing industries can also be described as risky, and people taking food processor jobs must exercise great care while at work. Some of the hazards include wet floors that may be slippery, the heavy equipment and machines that are used in this particular industry, and the low temperatures that can be a threat to the health of the employees among other things that pose challenges to people working in the food processing industry.

It is therefore imperative for anybody working in the food processing industry to ensure that they get enough rest, as the work involved is quite tiring. In addition, necessary protective measures including protective wear must be worn at all times to ensure that one is safe from the possible risks that are likely to occur. In addition, rules and regulations of the food processing industry must be strictly followed as this will contribute greatly in preventing accidents and risks.

Qualification for Food Processing Jobs

Generally, as practice has had it over the years, there is no particular kind of training that one is required to undergo before securing a job in the food processing industry. Besides the fact that almost everyone has some knowledge in food processing being a domestic chore in every home, it is also a fact that one can easily learn food processing procedures and technique by observation, a method commonly referred to as apprenticeship.

Employment

The food processing industry is quite a wide field and therefore there are numerous job opportunities. Annually, this industry takes not less that half a million employees. This number is expected to grow with time as the industry continues to expand. Besides expansion, at any given time there are a great number of people leaving this particular field for various reasons. This therefore means that at any given time there are vacancies that need to be filled, hence numerous job opportunities. Remuneration in this particular field varies depending on the particular job that one engages in. On average however, the pay ranges between $20,000 and $34,000.

Conclusion

The food processing industry is quite wide with numerous opportunities to offer. However, as already mentioned, care must be taken while working in this particular industry as there are several risks involved.
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