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Growing Careers in Food & Beverage Industry

Posted by tag44jobs on May 11, 2009

Employment growth in the food service industry will be spurred by increases in population, household income, and leisure time that will allow people to more often dine out and take vacations. In addition, the large number of two-income households will lead more families to opt for the convenience of dining out.

Chefs, cooks, and food preparation workers prepare, season, and cook a wide range of foods – from soups, snacks, and salads to entrees, side dishes, and desserts – in a variety of restaurants and other food services establishments. Chefs and cooks create recipes and prepare meals, while food preparation workers peel and cut vegetables, trim meat, prepare poultry, and perform other duties such as keeping work areas clean and monitoring temperatures of ovens and stovetops.

Chefs and head cooks also are responsible for directing the work of other kitchen workers, estimating food requirements, and ordering food supplies.

Executive chefs and head cooks coordinate the work of the kitchen staff and direct the preparation of meals. Chefs tend to be more highly skilled and better trained than cooks. The specific responsibilities of most cooks are determined by a number of factors, including the type of restaurant in which they work.

Most fast-food or short-order cooks and food preparation workers require little education or training; most skills are learned on the job. Training generally starts with basic sanitation and workplace safety subjects and continues with instruction on food handling, preparation, and cooking procedures.

Large corporations in the food services and hospitality industries also offer paid internships and summer jobs to those just starting out in the field. Internships provide valuable experience and can lead to placement in more formal chef training programs.

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