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Cool food jobs (and how to get them)

Ever think about becoming a chef? Or maybe even an ice cream taster? We’ve got you covered with some of the best food jobs in the industry.

Based on Irena Chalmers’ Great Food Jobs 2, we’ve come to the conclusion that there are some amazing food jobs out there. In Chalmers’ books, she supplies “ideas and inspiration for your job hunt” as well as the how-to on landing these jobs. The food industry is divided into many sectors: retail, food service, media, design, publicity, history and more. Looking for a dream job starts with figuring out what expertise you need for a specific title. Below we list some of the more popular jobs found in the food industry and tips on how to get them, as well as offer some general inspiration.

Food geographer

This job is all about location, location, location. A food geographer studies traffic patterns, real estate, school zones and current restaurants in an area as a way to advise future restaurateurs if opening a new restaurant is feasible. Over 50 percent of restaurants close in less than two years of their opening, and this is mostly because of poor market research. A food geographer can help a restaurant owner avoid this unfortunate outcome.

Baby food chef

Ever wonder who creates the recipes for all the baby food you feed your little one? Recipe testers and chefs brainstorm flavors, test combinations and ultimately create the products you buy at the store. To create baby food flavors for companies, you must have either a culinary degree, nutrition degree or a food science degree.

Embassy chef

If you’re an international student fresh out of culinary school, then Chalmers has a great suggestion specifically for you: Become an embassy chef at your home embassy in the U.S. You’ll score an awesome job in which you’ll be able to speak your native tongue and cook the food of your homeland.

Food tour guide

Whether you’re from a big city like Boston, New York or Austin or from a small town in Delaware or Wisconsin, people will always be interested in discovering new eateries in new places. Chat with local vendors, and set up an official “map” for what the tour would look like so you can give your guests the best experience in your town or city.

Food historian

If you’re a lover of all things history, then becoming a food historian might be the perfect job for you. You’ll need a history degree and experience, so stopping by your local museum could be a way to start. Chris Kimball showcases it best in his book, Fannie’s Last Supper, in which he re-creates a meal from a 1896 cookbook, using only the appliances and instruments that were available during that time.

Menu writer

Ever notice how once you sit down at a restaurant table and open your menu, your gaze suddenly falls onto a specific appetizer or entree? Think this is coincidence? No! Menu writers have studied and developed different methods of drawing your attention to what dish the restaurant wants to sell more of. Positioning of menu items, size of font and colors all play key roles in menu writing.

How to get them

Whether you choose any of these jobs or create your own based on personal interests, a culinary degree always helps to open doors. Although not essential to landing these jobs, having a culinary education will help you to network with the right people and will definitely open doors to the right places. Discover new job openings in the food world by visiting Good Food Jobs.

More on culinary careers

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Culinary vacations: A treat for your taste buds
Pursuing a culinary career

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