Baker Kaitunu Parāoa

Bakers prepare, bake and decorate bread, rolls, pastries, desserts, cakes and slices.

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Bakers may do some or all of the following:

  • follow recipes and change ingredients when needed
  • measure and mix ingredients
  • knead, roll and shape the dough or pastry for baking, either manually or using a machine
  • bake items in an oven
  • prepare items for sale, including icing items or decorating cakes
  • prepare customer orders and serve customers.

Physical Requirements

Bakers need to be reasonably fit and healthy, with a high standard of personal cleanliness. They also need to have good hand-eye co-ordination. 

Useful Experience

Useful experience for bakers includes:

  • work as a baker's assistant
  • food-handling work
  • customer service work.

Personal Qualities

Bakers need to be:

  • careful and accurate, with an eye for detail
  • creative
  • practical and efficient with good organisational skills
  • able to work quickly
  • able to work well under pressure
  • able to follow instructions
  • able to work as part of a team
  • able to do basic maths.

Skills

Bakers need to have:

  • knowledge of bakery products and ingredients
  • knowledge of baking and decorating processes
  • knowledge of food hygiene, health and safety regulations
  • ability to follow recipes
  • ability to handle machinery and equipment.

Self-employed bakers also need small business skills.

Conditions

Bakers:

  • usually do shift work, including early mornings, evenings, and weekends
  • work in kitchens at places such as bakeries, cake shops, supermarkets, hotels and restaurants
  • usually work in hot and noisy environments, and have to meet strict deadlines.

Bakers can earn around $45K-$67K per year.

Chances of getting a job as a Baker are good due to a shortage of people interested in this type of work.

Pay for bakers varies according to experience.

  • Unqualified bakers usually earn the minimum wage.
  • Qualified bakers usually earn up to $45,000 a year.
  • Bakers working in supervisory roles can earn up to $67,000.

Sources: Baking Industry Association of NZ and Competenz, 2018.

Bakers may progress to supervisors or head bakers, or set up their own business.

With further training, bakers may become:

  • bakery tutors
  • food stylists
  • test bakery technicians
  • food technologists and laboratory technicians
  • food writers
  • recipe and product developers
  • production managers
  • specialist technical advisers
  • quality assurance managers.

Bakers may specialise in:

  • artisan breads
  • factory production
  • cake design and decoration
  • confectionery
  • pastry.

Years Of Training

2-3 years of training usually required.

There are no specific requirements to become a baker. However, a certificate in baking is useful. Examples of certificates include:

  • New Zealand Certificate in Baking – Generalist (Level 4)
  • New Zealand Certificate in Trade Baking – Craft (Level 4)
  • New Zealand Certificate in Trade Baking – Plant (Level 4)
  • Superior Patisserie Certificate (Level 4).

You can complete an apprenticeship and gain a New Zealand Certificate in Trade Baking (Level 4) through Competenz.

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