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Food, drink and tobacco process operatives

£10,920 Average salary at age 20
£23,920 Average Salary
44 Average hours per week


Food, drink and tobacco process operatives set, operate and attend machinery to bake, freeze, heat, crush, mix, blend and otherwise process foodstuffs, beverages and tobacco leaves.

Main Tasks

  • Sets, operates and attends machinery and ovens to mix, bake and otherwise prepare bread and flour confectionery products;
  • Operates machinery to crush, mix, malt, cook and ferment grains and fruits to produce beer, wines, malt liquors, vinegar, yeast and related products;
  • Attends equipment to make jam, toffee, cheese, processed cheese, margarine, syrup, ice, pasta, ice-cream, sausages, chocolate, maize starch, edible fats and dextrin;
  • Operates equipment to cool, heat, dry, roast, blanch, pasteurise, smoke, sterilise, freeze, evaporate and concentrate foodstuffs and liquids used in food processing;
  • Mixes, pulps, grinds, blends and separates foodstuffs and liquids with churning, pressing, sieving, grinding and filtering equipment;
  • Processes tobacco leaves by hand or machine to make cigarettes, cigars, pipe and other tobacco products.


There are no formal academic entry requirements, though some GCSEs/S grades can be an advantage. Off- and on-the-job training is available. NVQs/ SVQs in Food and Drink Manufacturing Operations are available at Levels 1, 2 and 3. NVQs/SVQs in Tobacco Processing are available at Level 2.

What Food, drink and tobacco process operatives studied in higher education

A text alternative for this canvas pie chart is provided in the data table below
What Food, drink and tobacco process operatives studied in higher education
Occupation Percentage Value
(C9) Others in biological sciences2
(B2) Pharmacology, toxicology & pharmacy1
(G1) Mathematics1
(W2) Design studies8
(L3) Sociology4
(C1) Biology6
(H3) Mechanical engineering2
(F1) Chemistry4
(C8) Psychology6
(W1) Fine art4
(H4) Aerospace engineering1
(C5) Microbiology2
(F7) Science of aquatic & terrestrial environments1
(W3) Music3
(D3) Animal science1
(F6) Geology1
(F8) Physical geographical sciences3
(W8) Imaginative writing1
(D4) Agriculture1
(W6) Cinematics & photography2
(C7) Molecular biology, biophysics & biochemistry1
(Q3) English studies4
(H8) Chemical, process & energy engineering2
(L2) Politics2
(K2) Building1
(W4) Drama1
(M1) Law by area1
(M2) Law by topic1
(J9) Others in technology1
(N8) Hospitality, leisure, sport, tourism & transport2
(B9) Others in subjects allied to medicine1
(B1) Anatomy, physiology & pathology2
(F4) Forensic & archaeological sciences2
(V5) Philosophy2
(L1) Economics1
(B4) Nutrition1
(N1) Business studies6
(X1) Training teachers1
(K4) Planning (urban, rural & regional)1
(C6) Sport & exercise science2
(P3) Media studies2
(N2) Management studies2
(V1) History by period3
(Q8) Classical studies1
(H6) Electronic & electrical engineering2
(I1) Computer science2
(W5) Dance1

UK Prospects

132500 Workforce Size
10.03% Predicted decline 2022 - 2027
17629 Predicted Replacement 2022 - 2027

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