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Food Process Worker

No Formal Qualifications On The Job Training Traineeship Year 10 Preferred

Also known as Food and Drink Factory Worker.

Food process workers operate machines and prepare foods for processing using a wide range of equipment and methods.

If involved in the storage and conservation of grain, food process workers may take samples of grain for analysis, keep records of silo stocks and sew bags using industrial sewing machines.

Those involved in grain mill work do a lot of lifting, pushing and dragging.

Conditions may be dusty, noisy, hot or cold depending on the processes being carried out.


    Food process workers may perform the following tasks:

  • receive, check and store raw materials
  • operate conveyor and processing equipment
  • take samples and check products for dispatch
  • check boxes or bins of fruit and vegetables as they are delivered and organise weighing and storage
  • prepare and sort fruit and vegetables for processing and feed them into machines
  • handle live or slaughtered poultry and prepare for cooking or further processing
  • operate machinery for chemical treating, size grading, crushing, extracting juice, mixing, freezing and drying foods
  • operate machinery to blend flour, meal and feed
  • sterilise equipment and keep processing areas clean


  • good communication skills
  • enjoy practical work
  • high standard of personal cleanliness
  • aptitude for technical activities
  • attention to detail
  • good hand-eye coordination
  • able to cope with the physical demands of the job
  • no skin allergies or chest complaints

Interest Area



Brewery Worker - produces, tests, packages, stores and dispatches beer in kegs, bottles and cans.

Dairy Process Worker - operates a wide range of mechanical equipment, often from a sophisticated control room, to produce dairy products such as cheese, butter, milk powder, yoghurt, fresh milk and cream.

Fruit and Vegetable Process Worker - operates equipment to prepare canned and frozen fruit and vegetables, sauces, jams and fruit juices using a wide range of methods.

Margarine and Edible Oils Process Worker - operates equipment to blend ingredients for margarine and other edible oil products. F

Pet Food Processing Machine Operator - operates equipment to manufacture pet food.

Pharmaceuticals Production Machine Operator - operates equipment to produce pharmaceutical products such as pain relievers, first aid dressings, cosmetics and toiletries.

Poultry Processor - slaughters, dresses, cuts, trims, prepares and packs poultry.

Soft Drink and Syrup Making Machine Operator - operates equipment to produce syrups, fruit juices and soft drinks.

Tea and Coffee Processing Machine Operator - assists in the processing of tea and roasted, ground and instant coffee.


No Formal Qualifications On The Job Training Traineeship Year 10 Preferred

You can work as a food process worker without formal qualifications.

You will probably get some informal training on the job.

You can also become a food process worker through a traineeship in Food Processing.

Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.

Additional Information

    For certain food processing work, such as poultry processing, you may need a forklift licence. See the separate entry for Forklift Operator for further information.

    Once you are employed, you may be able to develop, and have recognised, additional skills under the Food Processing Training Package that will expand your career opportunities within this industry.


Food process workers are employed in confectionery, flour, poultry, fruit and vegetable processing firms, as well as other food, beverage and pharmaceutical processing firms. They also work in wineries, breweries and soft drink plants. Processing work tends to be seasonal, in line with crop harvesting times. This means that companies must regulate production to ensure that a range of products are available all year round. In some cases they operate on a reduced level for much of the year and take on temporary staff during peak periods.

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More Information - External Links

Job Outlook for Food Process Worker Poultry Cooperative Research Centre Diary Australia

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