(I would just say Awesome!!!), that you chose Food Science or Food Technology as a major. For very obvious reasons humans won’t ever stop eating, this industry is unstoppable. Food has been a part of our life since forever, humans have been known as food gatherers.
Food industry is one of the most dynamic industries after electronics and telecommunication, IT sector. The phrase there’s always a room for improvement is proven correct by the evolving food industry. Due to the advent of globalization food travels faster than light, I have access to world’s different food commodities due to the marvels in food processing and I too can have cuisines from around the world.
The food sector has the following calibers
- Every taste recognized by your taste bud has an industry catered to it.
- Every food we crave for, every meal of eat (breakfast, lunch, dinner) has an industry catered to meet the ends.
So you made a great decision by studying Food Science and Technology– as you have a huge number of options opened for you to choose an area of expertise. Of Course, depending upon your inclinations and preferences. The food industry consists of — Agriculture (Post and Pre-harvest technology), meat industry, bakery, dairy, cereal based product industry, fruit and vegetable, novel food processing techniques, logistics, governing bodies, auditors, marketing, retail, food safety and quality management, nutraceutical and functional food, flavor industry, and the list goes on.
In this article, let’s review the different jobs opportunities your degree can offer you, food industry jobs are not limited to working in Quality Assurance, production units and R&D facilities, its much beyond that.
Due to these options offered by the industry it becomes difficult for a fresher to choose the path. This guide could probably help you to seek the job that matches your interests and inclinations. The best way to know your area of expertise is by– either working (as an intern) in the industry or entering the research field, during the 4 year period of undergraduate studies and talking to your seniors and mentors who are already employed in the industry.
A fresher including myself thinks (have thought) jobs in the food industry are restricted to Quality control/Assurance, R&D and production. But let me tell you, it has more to offer you. If you have inclination towards sales and marketing you can choose to work as a Techno-commercial executive or Key Accounts profile, as the job needs you to have solid technical knowledge and a good communication skills; also if you are keen on doing something enterprising to roll out money then starting out a small food processing unit or a consulting service to help your customers with your expertise or you could possibly start a food service unit. Opportunities are numerous, we should be ready to change, learn and face challenges.
On the same lines, if you are passionate about science or would love to spark your neurons then venture out into the field of science (food) communication, where you can either be associated with a publishing house by working as an editor and edit scientific manuscripts. Editing scientific manuscripts helps you learn about the research that runs in the laboratory, and also lets you help researchers to improve their manuscript so that it is lucid to the masses who would follow their work. This passion could let you dive deep into the space of the food industry, the innovations, downfall, learn something new everyday.
Talking about jobs in the research— students after graduating can consider research based jobs like working as a research associate, pursue a doctoral degree. These jobs are for people who are highly determined, dynamic and enduring. Research jobs are tough, so is any other job; but here things run differently, you need to possess good writing and communication skills, possess zeal to think and innovate; think to the extent to change the world. These are I feel some of the core qualities to work in this area.
Teaching– If you are passionate to share your learning and ready to give back to the food science community, then taking up a teaching job can be very rewarding. You can be associated with the industry through collaborative projects while keeping your full-time teaching job, this gives a great deal of learning experience to shape your career.
Ending note: This article is a snapshot of the various job profiles a fresh graduate can choose and have a successful career. You may not find your first job perfect, but you may try different job profiles, learn and speak to people to know more about their jobs, and what motivates them to work. This journey could be long and tortuous, but this would inspire you to grow and become a responsible food technologist/scientist. All the best, hope you find the job that suits your interest.
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