Food packaging operative

Food packaging operatives work on production lines to put food and drink products into containers, cans or packets.

Average salary (a year)

£12,500 Starter

to

£20,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

41 to 43 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays on shifts

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) for a level 2 course

More information

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, for an intermediate apprenticeship

More information

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

Food and Drink Process OperatorApprentice

  • Wage : £200.00 Weekly
  • Location: Wellington TA21 0UR

Apprentice Food Production Operative

  • Wage : £433.00 Weekly
  • Location: Banbury OX17 2BN

Courses In England

Performing Manufacturing Operations ( Level 2)

  • Provider: Blackburn College
  • Start date: 03 September 2020
  • Location: BLACKBURN

Improving Operational Performance Apprenticeship Level 2 - Performing Manfuacturing Operations

  • Provider: QUALITRAIN LIMITED
  • Start date: 30 October 2019
  • Location: Alfreton

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