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17 Jobs that Require Food Handlers Certificate

A butcher shop owner discussing with a man in a suit.

Essentially, food is easily contaminated and needs to be handled with care. That’s why at the workplace level, some jobs require a food handlers certificate. The certificate serves as proof that the owner has adequate training to avoid mistakes when handling food, which could cause health implications to consumers.

The certificate applies to all sectors, as long as the employee comes into direct contact with food. Below are some jobs that require a food handlers certificate.

1. Butcher

A butcher with a cleaver about to cut into raw meat.

A butcher’s primary responsibility is to provide meat to customers. To do so, they need to inspect the meat, cut the meat down into smaller portions, package the meat, and much more. One can work as a butcher in any part of the world, given that meat is consumed globally.

Other Responsibilities of a Butcher:

• Cleaning and maintenance of tools

• Sanitation controls

• Delivery coordination

• Butchery inventory

Requirements for a Butcher:

• Food preparation education

• Meat preparation knowledge

• Excellent customer service skills

• Conversant with meat cutting techniques

• Ability to work in cold environments

2. Baker

A baker applying flour while kneading dough.

To excel as a baker, one needs to have an eye for detail and portray creativity in mixing ingredients. Above everything else, the baker has to ensure that they adhere to all professional standards to deliver quality products.

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Responsibilities:

• Curating and improving recipes

• Combining ingredients to make baked products

• Food safety and quality control

• Customer service

• Cleaning the workspace

Requirements:

• High school diploma or equivalent

• Flexibility due to varying customer demands

• Basic math and computer skills

• Ability to work in a hot environment for extended periods

• Excellent communication and planning skills

• More experience is an added advantage

3. Fruit Picker

Orange pickers harvesting ripe oranges in the orchard.

A fruit and a vegetable picker is responsible for harvesting fruit, nuts, berries, and vegetables at farms and orchards and prepare them for distribution. A fruit picker can work in diverse environments, which include small family farms or large-scale operations. Since harvesting is seasonal, a fruit picker might have to travel far and wide to land the next job.

Tasks of a Fruit Picker:

• Selecting the suitable fruits and vegetables for picking

• Discarding non-ideal produce

• Operating harvesting machinery

• Sorting and packing produce

Requirements:

• No skin conditions or allergies to agricultural chemicals

• Ability to work at heights

• Flexibility of travel

• Ability to do manual work

4. Winery Worker

A winery worker packing bottles of wine into boxes.

Being a winery worker entails everything from growing grapes to distributing wine to the consumer. While becoming a winery worker doesn’t need a long list of formal qualifications, a food handlers certificate is necessary. Some of the leading wine regions include California, Oregon, and Pennsylvania.

Requirements:

• Safety consciousness

• Proficiency with numbers

• Practical

• Excellent communication skills

Job Description:

• Operating farm machinery

• Selecting and picking grapes

• Weed control in the vineyard

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• Building trellis for climbing vines

5. Food Handler

A tuna handler at a wet market cutting pieces of tuna.

Needless to say, a food handler needs a food handlers certificate. The job entails packing, storing, and serving food to customers. A food handler can work in a hospital, cafeteria, manufacturing company, or restaurant. Ideally, a food handler must demonstrate conversancy with food health and safety regulations.

Responsibilities of a Food Handler:

• Packing food for delivery

• Preparing food

• Cleaning food preparation tools

• Monitoring food supplies.

Requirements:

• High school diploma or GED

• A food handler’s license

• Organizational and problem-solving skills

• Ability to stand for long periods

On average, a food handler takes home around $25,000 a year. However, at entry-level, the earning might be slightly lower than that, to the tune of around $19,000 a year. While a food handler can work anywhere, California, Washington, and New York have the highest salaries for the job.

6. Fishmonger

A fish monger offering a whole fresh fish.

As the name suggests, a fishmonger’s primary responsibility is preparing and selling fish and related products. The fishmonger ensures that the final product displayed on shelves is aesthetically pleasing and not anywhere near the original scaly form.

Responsibilities:

• Finding reliable sources for seafood

• Cleaning the fish

• Displaying the fish

• Delivering orders to customers

• Dressing seafood products

• Cleaning tools involved

Requirements:

• Physical stamina

• Excellent hand-eye coordination

• Numeracy skills

• Interpersonal skills

While the job might not be stringent on formal educational requirements, having an excellent academic record helps an applicant stand out. At the entry level, the fishmonger can make an average of $15,682. On the other hand, a fishmonger in a senior position can make an average of $28,326.

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7. Kitchen Assistant

A couple of chef assistants hard at work.

A kitchen assistant works under a cook and helps with the preparation of various ingredients and cleaning the kitchen. While kitchen assistant jobs are widespread, some states, such as Nevada and Michigan, tend to be an excellent place to start.

Responsibilities of a Kitchen Assistant:

• Cleaning and sanitizing food preparation areas

• Cleaning and storing cooking appliances and utensils

• Assisting with meal preparation

• Unloading delivered food supplies

• Getting food ingredients from storage units to the kitchen

Requirements:

• High school diploma or GED

• A food handler’s certificate

• Organizational skills

• Ability to stand for long periods

• An understanding of food health and safety regulations

While the pay might vary depending on the state and level of experience, the average annual income is $24,147.

8. Chef

A close look at a chef pouring olive oil onto the dish.

A chef is mandated with the role of preparing tasty meals while ensuring that they meet the highest quality standards. Since a chef has other people working under them, they need to demonstrate leadership skills, and most of all, be creative.

Responsibilities of a Chef:

• Overseeing kitchen operations

• Making plans for the menu

• Revamping the menu with new recipes

• Ensuring meals are served on time

• Making improvements on recipes based on customer feedback

Requirements:

• A degree or diploma from a culinary school

• Ability to multitask

• Work ethic

• Passion for making food

• Creativity

While every part of the country could use a chef, some states have better opportunities. States like Hawaii and New Jersey are among the highest in ranking. Others include Georgia and Rhode Island. On average, a chef in the United States takes home $48,954 each year, though the number could go up depending on certifications and years of experience.

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9. Food and Beverage Supervisor

A couple of supervisors monitoring the beverage production line.

A food and beverage supervisor is also known as a food service manager. The job primarily entails overseeing food planning and preparation in places like resorts and restaurants. They are also mandated to ensure adherence to regulations in the food and alcoholic beverages industries.

Other Responsibilities:

• Making food and drink selections to be served

• Managing the inventory for food and beverages

• Inspecting kitchen equipment

• Addressing customer complaints

Requirements:

• Problem-solving skills

• Bachelors’ degree in hospitality

• Basic computer literacy

• Demonstrate an understanding of federal and local food regulations

How much a food and beverage supervisor makes might vary from state to state and depending on skills and years of experience. However, the median annual salary stands at $50,820. Some of the states with the highest wages for food and beverage supervisors include New Jersey, Florida, and Delaware.

10. Food Truck Manager

A close look at a food truck chef directing her crew.

Food trucks have become a norm in the recent past. That, in turn, has led to the rise in demand for food truck managers. Ideally, a food truck manager must be a team player and one who enjoys customer service.

Job Duties

• Pre-shift food preparation

• Preparing sandwiches and wraps

• Post shift inventory

• Driving the truck around when needed

Requirements:

• Ability to stand for extended periods

• Ability to multi-task

• Professional cooking experience

• Excellent customer service

On average, a food truck manager in the United States makes $33,705 per year. Some of the cities that pay food truck managers above average include Manhattan and Queens.

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11. Food Packer

A couple of food packers handling the packages.

A lot goes into food packaging before it gets to the final consumer. The food can include fish, soft drinks, pre-cooked meals. Generally, the specific duties of a food packer might vary depending on the type of drinks they are handling, but some roles cut across all fields.

Common Responsibilities:

• Inspecting containers for cleanliness and damages

• Sealing and labeling containers

• Placing products into their respective containers

• Stacking and arranging containers

Requirements:

• High school diploma or GED

• Excellent hand-eye coordination

• Detail orientation

• Physical fitness to lift heavy containers

While food packaging does not necessarily require formal education beyond a high school diploma, job-specific training might be mandatory. A food packer can take home an average of $24,096 per year.

12. Dietary Aide

As the name suggests, a dietary aide works hand in hand with dieticians and doctors to help patients take nutritious meals. The dietary aide discusses with patients in an attempt to enable them to them take healthy meals they enjoy.

Dietary Aide Responsibilities:

• Assisting with meal preparation and serving

• Advising patients and their families about healthy eating

• Helping with cleaning duties in dining areas

• Monitoring patients’ eating habits

Requirements:

• A high school diploma or equivalent

• Interpersonal skills

• Compliance with sanitation regulations

• Ability to follow instructions

On average, a dietary aide in the United States makes $25,500. However, the salary can vary widely depending on factors such as level of education and years of experience. Some of the best states to work as a dietary aide include Indiana, North Dakota, Michigan, and Washington.

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13. Caterer

A couple of caterers setting up the small appetizers.

A caterer’s primary role is consulting with clients to come up with customized menus for parties and events. Besides developing the menu, a caterer is also closely involved with food preparation, serving, and cleanup. It is, therefore, necessary that they have a food handlers certificate.

Caterer Responsibilities:

• Sourcing ingredients for specific menus

• Overseeing or preparing food to be served

• Transporting food and other equipment to and from events

• Ensuring food remains fresh

• Enforcing food safety regulations

Requirements:

• A high school diploma

• Basic numeracy and computer skills

• Communication skills

• Creative thinking

On average, a caterer earns $27,333 per year. However, some top earners in the field bag up to $41,500 each year. Some of the best places to work as a caterer include New York, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire.

14. Candy Maker

A candy maker displaying the finished chocolate candies.

Ideally, a candy maker falls under the broader category of food batch makers. In a nutshell, a candy maker mixes candy ingredients and cooks them at specified temperatures. A candy maker also observes equipment for possible faults such as undesirable tastes.

Other Responsibilities:

• Cleaning and sterilizing factory processing areas

• Determining mixing sequences

• Grading food products based on government regulations

• Testing samples for butterfat content, moisture content, etc

• Product manipulation either by hand or machinery

Requirements:

• High school diploma or GED

• An eye for detail

Notably, the average candy maker in the US makes around $28,606 each year. While there are numerous candy-making companies across the states, Boston has the best pay for candy makers. In some cases, candy makers might be required to hold a bachelors’ degree in culinary arts, although additional training might be necessary.

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15. Salad Maker

A close look at a chef assembling a salad and a sandwich.

A salad maker works in the kitchen and does precisely that: preparing salads and fruits. A salad maker’s job entails preparing dressings, cleaning vegetables, and mixing ingredients.

Other Responsibilities:

• Preparing cold sandwiches cheeses

• Preparing relish plates

• Preparing gelatin desserts

• Peeling, cleaning, and cutting fruits

Requirements:

Becoming a salad maker doesn’t require strict formal requirements. However, a salad maker needs to be conversant with food regulations and demonstrate multitasking and team playing skills.

On average, a salad maker earns $25,287 per year. However, an entry-level salad maker takes home an average of $20,533 per year. On the other hand, top earners in that field take home up to $29,998.

16. Short Order Cook

A close look at a cook preparing gourmet burgers.

A short-order cook handles various aspects of food preparation in small establishments. An excellent short-order cook is one who demonstrates the ability to multitask, especially under pressure. Being a short-order cook also involves standing for extended periods of time.

Responsibilities of a Short Order Cook:

• Preparing food according to customers’ specifications

• Planning work orders

• Food preparation

• Serving customers

• Grilling and cooking foods

Requirements:

• A high school diploma or equivalent

• A good sense of taste

• Excellent communication skills

• Manual dexterity

The District of Columbia is among the best paying regions for short-order cooks, with an average of about $27,450. In other parts, the pay ranges between $16,000 and $24,000.

17. Sandwich Artist

This is a top view look at various healthy sandwiches.

A sandwich artist can work at a fast-food joint and deli, where they prepare sandwiches depending on the customer’s preferences. From time to time, the sandwich artist restocks ingredients and condiments so that they don’t run out.

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Responsibilities:

• Sanitizing utensils and dishes before use

• Sandwich ingredients preparation

• Cleaning the workstation

• Wrapping customers’ sandwiches

Requirements:

• High school diploma or GED

• A food handler’s license

• Work ethic

• The ability to stand for extended periods of time

• Excellent communication skills

• Ability to follow oral instructions

On average, a sandwich artist makes $21,064 per year, which narrows down to $11 per hour. Some of the best places to work as a sandwich artist include Maine, Delaware, and California.

References:

Zip Recruiter: Master Butcher Salary

Salary: Baker Salary

Zip Recruiter: Fruit Picking Salary

Zip Recruiter: Winery Worker Salary

Zip Recruiter: Food Handler Salary

Zip Recruiter: Fish Monger Salary

Zip Recruiter: Kitchen Assistant Salary

Salary: Chef Salary

Pay Scale: Food and Beverage Supervisor Hourly Rate

Zip Recruiter: Food Truck Manager

Zip Recruiter: Food Packer

Indeed: Dietary Aide Salary

Zip Recruiter: Caterer Salary

Zip Recruiter: Candy Maker Salary

Glass Door: Salad Maker Salary

Glass Door: Short Order Cook Salary

Zip Recruiter: Sandwich Artist Salary