How to become a food packaging operative

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly

College

You can do a Level 2 Award in Packaging Technology. This can teach you some of the skills and knowledge you need in this job.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course

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Apprenticeship

You may be able to start by doing a food and drink process operator intermediate apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship

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Direct Application

You could apply directly for jobs. You don't usually need any qualifications to start as a packaging operative, although it may help if you've worked on a production line before.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • the ability to work on your own
  • knowledge of manufacturing production and processes
  • the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
  • the ability to work well with others
  • knowledge of maths
  • physical skills like movement, coordination, dexterity and grace
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and Requirements

You might need a forklift licence for some some jobs, if you have to move finished products to factory storage areas.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your duties might include:

  • checking products on the production line for quality
  • keeping machines supplied with packaging materials and labels
  • reporting machine faults
  • adjusting machine settings

Working environment

You could work in a factory.

Your working environment may be hot, noisy and cool.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could progress to supervisor or manager.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Apprentice Food & Drink Processing Operative

  • Wage: £156.00 Weekly
  • Location: Rochdale

Mill Assistant Apprentice

  • Wage: £225.75 Weekly
  • Location: King's Lynn

Courses In England

Performing Manufacturing Operations ( Level 2)

  • Provider: BLACKBURN COLLEGE
  • Start date: 01 August 2021
  • Location: BLACKBURN

NVQ Diploma in Performing Manufacturing Operations (Unit Route) Level 1

  • Provider: QUEEN ALEXANDRA COLLEGE
  • Start date: 01 November 2020
  • Location: Birmingham

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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