Rewarding Career in Food Production

The food industry is a fast growing segment all over the world. The main reason for this is that new technology has made it possible for perishable items to be preserved and transported at a larger distance. Apart from this logistics have improved considerably and import and export facilities are being enhanced in real-time. This basically means that a company manufacturing chocolate in Switzerland can actually cover the globe with their presence through a distribution network based on a local and regional level in each country.

This expansive network requires the support of trained individuals who actually know what the requirements of a food production job are. If you are considering a career in the food production sector or perhaps have been involved in it previously, a good idea is to look at a job portal that specializes in food production jobs. For a fresh candidate this will give you an insight into the vast opportunities available in food production on a global and local level. For an experienced candidate you will actually be able to see a consolidated food of opportunities available in your area of specialization. This essentially means that you can look at a new opportunity that matches your credentials and concentrate on building a rewarding career in food production.

Career Options In Food Production Jobs

By looking at different career options in this sector you can find people who specialize in shift management to see how the inventory is being processed and managed by the production staff. Apart from this there is an opportunity to work as a production planner. This basically means that you will have to have an idea of the sales target of the company and manage resources that are utilized in planning the production of a particular FMCG product. You will have to concentrate on evaluating how much of inventory you will require to match distribution and sales targets.

Quality assurance is another spectrum that falls in the category of food production jobs. As a quality assurance manager you will be provided standards and guidelines on what the basic requirements are for the product that your company manufactures. Based on these guidelines you will be able to see that the production of the inventory matches the quality requirements in terms of product quality, packaging quality and condition it is delivered in to the market. Apart from this you will be required to manage quality complaints that may arise from the consumer or distributor end.

With this unique spectrum of job opportunities, it is no wonder that food production jobs are highly sought after. It is therefore a wise idea to look at an online job portal that provides you specific information on food jobs. This means that your job search will be concentrated on your industry of choice and make this endeavor very efficient.

An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Food Product Development Firms

Did your career coach, co-packer, or consultant refer you to a food product developer? Are you curious about what a food product development firm can actually do for your business? This quick guide will explain exactly what it is that these developers do, and what you can expect while searching for the perfect firm to suit your needs.

The Food Product Development Process

A good food product development firm will tailor their process to help you achieve your goals – chances are you won’t have to use every service they are capable of providing. In fact, the first step in the process is to assess your goals. Your goals may involve creating a new marketable product, adjusting your current product, or scaling your current production methods. This may also involve brainstorming new recipes and ideas with the food scientists and culinary developers who make up the development team.

Once goals are established, the food product development team will take steps to develop and refine the concept depending on your processing, packaging, and distribution needs. Regulatory guidelines will help direct the developer’s progress. Some firms also conduct market research to gauge the potential demand for your recipe, whether in the consumer or business-to-business arena.

Your concept will then move to the testing and prototyping phase. Issues like cost and manufacturing restrictions will begin to become apparent. Several rounds of testing and refinement may be necessary.

Food product developers can then conduct shelf-life testing, stability testing, taste testing, and the testing of physical and biochemical properties of your developing product. This might take your product back into the testing and prototyping phase; attention to detail is the most important aspect of the development industry.

Regulatory compliance is also an important part of new product development and should be part of the process from beginning to end. Most firms also offer the option of creating your nutrition label to ensure it complies with local and federal regulations as well.

If needed, the food development team can also run tests that gauge customer acceptance of your new product or recipe. There are third-party firms that conduct this type of test exclusively but it’s always nice to cut costs by going with the same company for as much of the development process as possible.

Some firms may also assist with your packaging design, investor presentations, and product launch. They may be able to get you into trade shows that will further your success. Every food product development firm offers optional extras, but not all firms offer the same forms of pre- and post-launch support.

Every development firm is different. They all offer different levels of involvement, different resources, and different philosophies. You will conduct many, many interviews before landing upon the perfect match – but the result is well worth the effort. Are you excited about working with a food product development company that will put your new recipe or product on the map?

Food Production Still Depends Too Heavily On Oil

Oil and petroleum products play a major part in every aspect of food production from synthetic fertiliser and pesticide production through processing and packaging right to final delivery in the shops.

The industry is one of the biggest users of fossil fuels and therefore is often at the mercy of fluctuations in oil and petrol prices as well as being both energy inefficient and unsustainable as reserves of oil in the world are gradually being depleted.

It is calculated that it takes more than 400 gallons of oil to feed one person for a year in the USA. Approximately a third of this goes to the manufacture of fertilisers, while another fifth is used in farm machinery. Add in the costs of the machinery that processes and packages the food and the transportation costs to the point of sale and these together explain that figure of 400 gallons per person per year.

In terms of energy conversion this food production system means that it takes three calories of energy for every single calorie of edible food produced on average. The difference when this calculation is applied to grain-fed beef is an astonishing 35 calories of energy for every one calorie of beef. Both these figures exclude the additional cost of energy input involved in food processing and transportation.

Those who advocate sustainable and organic farming point out that it is the industrial system of food production that accounts for what is argued to be such an inefficient use of energy.

The chief culprit, they say, is the amount of energy that goes into producing artificial fertilisers and pesticides, derived from such things as nitrogen or natural gas. It is calculated that as much as 40% of the energy that goes into the food production system goes into this part of the process.

It is also argued that the need for these products is precisely because of the structure of the food production system, both meat and vegetables, which have become increasingly produced in concentrated and specific areas of many countries.

Over time, such concentrated activity has depleted the nutrition of the soil, damaged ecosystems and polluted water supplies. There have also been increasing concerns about the long-term effects on human health of the residues of such chemicals in food.

Systems such as integrated pest management, organic farming and the use of more natural, low-chemical agricultural products are part of moving to more sustainable farming methods.

Using natural sources for biopesticides, yield enhancers and biofungicides can protect the land and crops and increase crop yields while leaving little or no residue in the food produced and this is the focus of the research and products being developed by biopesticides developers.

Such low-chem agricultural products are gradually replacing the older generation of artificial fertilisers and pesticides which are being withdrawn or phased out by many governments around the world. However, the process of getting this new, healthier generation of products tested, registered and licensed is both costly and lengthy. The process has also not so far been harmonised across the world and the need to do so is becoming increasingly urgent.

Other measures to reduce the energy inefficiency in food production include buying locally and organically produced food as well as reducing the amount of packaging used. While plainly consumers can take action about what they buy for themselves, they can also pressure the bigger food store chains to source more locally as well as to cut back on packaging.

Copyright (c) 2011 Alison Withers