Retail & Hospitality

Baker

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Service or Persuading Practical or MechanicalSkill Level 3

Bakers make bread, cakes and pastries using flour and other ingredients.

Bakers prepare and bake all types of breads, rolls, cakes, pastries and other baked goods. They usually work for bakeries that sell food for direct consumption by the public, or they may work for large Future Growth Strong organisations such as airlines, hotels or the military. They use raw ingredients and combine them either using machines or even by hand, bake them in ovens, and also glaze and decorate them. They may also slice and wrap these products for individual consumption.

Baker in front of oven

ANZSCO description: 351111 Prepares and bakes bread loaves and rolls.

Alternative names: Bread Baker

Specialisations: Breadmaker, Cake Maker, Doughmaker, Pastrycook

Knowledge, skills and attributes

Bakers need:

  • good hand-eye coordination
  • good organisational skills
  • the ability to read and follow recipes, to be creative
  • the ability to follow strict health and safety standards
  • good health with no skin or breathing complaints
  • the ability to meet strict deadlines
  • to maintain a neat and clean appearance

Duties and Tasks

Bakers may perform the following tasks:

  • check that equipment meets health and safety regulations
  • check the quality of raw materials and weigh ingredients
  • mix dough and batters by hand or machine, then place in tins or trays
  • load tins or trays into ovens, keeping an eye on the oven temperatures and the appearance of the bread, cake or pastry
  • unload ovens when the bread and other products are baked, take products out of trays and put aside to cool
  • glaze or decorate cakes and pastries with icing or cream
  • order baking supplies from wholesalers
  • operate slicing and wrapping machines
  • serve customers.


Working conditions

Bakers often work nights and early mornings to prepare their products for the coming day. They may work in plants, where large quantities of generic- baked goods are produced, or alternately in craft bakeries, which are smaller and produce a greater variety of more handmade baked goods.  This type of work tends to be repetitive.
The increased use of machinery has reduced heavy work for bakers. However, they still have to stand a lot of the time. Most bakers work full time, and they often work late at night or early in the morning. They may also work on weekends and public holidays. Conditions in the bakery are usually hot and humid.

Tools and technologies

Bakers often use and operate large industrial-sized mixing machines and ovens. The baked goods that they create are usually transported using tins and trays. Once products have been baked, they may also be decorated using glazing or decorating tools. Bakers also use slicing and wrapping machines to package their products for sale.

Education and training/entrance requirements

To become a qualified baker you usually need to complete an apprenticeship. A breadmaking or baking (combined) apprenticeship usually takes 36 months to complete and both are available as school-based apprenticeships.

 

Did You Know?

We eat about 500kg of food per year! 

Pastries

The trade of baking is one of the oldest trades in the world, with archaeological diggings in Egypt dating bakeries to 6000 BC.

Bakers work to produce one of the most basic commodities in Western civilisaton – bread. While bakers work primarily with flour, bakeries will also stock a wide range of other ingredients which they use to create meat pies, sausage rolls, cakes, scones, lamingtons, custard tarts, apple turnovers, danishes, doughnuts, damper, foccacia, and many more pastry treats.

Although a lot of bread is made by hand, some machinery may be used in preparing and mixing bread and pastry doughs and cake mixes.

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