This occupation is found in manufacturing and retail sectors. Employers range in size from small to large.
Bakers may work in a craft bakery, plant bakery or retail outlet. A craft baker works in a production unit producing hand crafted bakery products. They supply their own retail outlets or sell direct to third party wholesale customers. A plant baker produces bakery products using large scale production methods, to supply food and retail outlets. They work in a large-scale production facility, with a high level of automation in a continuous process. A retail baker is involved in both production and shop floor activities. They produce, bake off and display products for direct sale to customers.
The broad purpose of the occupation is to produce or bake-off food safe bakery products and package and label them to specification. Bakery products may be bread, pastries or confectionery. Bread includes buns/rolls, enriched doughs and loaves. Pastries include croissants, danish pastries, puff pastries and tarts. Whilst confectionery includes cakes, cupcakes, muffins and swiss rolls. Depending on the type of bakery, bakers may produce one product or a range of bakery products. They use a range of tools and equipment, which they clean and check. It is important that they complete bakery documentation/records, for example compliance checks. They also contribute to material and stock control, maintaining the production environment, and product and process improvement.
An employee in this occupation is responsible for working by themselves or as part of a team under supervision. They must produce safe bakery products to specification. Deadlines, productivity, efficiency, hygiene and environmental requirements must be met. They must ensure the health and safety of self and others. This includes the safe operation and cleaning of tools and equipment. Retail bakers must also meet service expectations and present a professional image of themselves and the company to customers.
Bakers may be required to work shifts and unsociable hours. It is often a physically demanding environment.