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These 3 Popular Skilled Trades in Demand in Ontario’s Food and Beverage Processing Industry

It’s no secret that Ontario’s food and beverage processing industry has lots of jobs to fill across many different departments. 

But there’s one particular area that’s in great demand: the skilled trades. 
 

What is a skilled trade?  

A skilled trade is an occupation that requires a special skill, knowledge or ability which can be obtained at a college, technical school or through specialized training.   

In Canada, there are over 300 designated skilled trades but not all these certifications are available in each province. Ontario has 144 different skilled trades that fall into the following categories 

Construction: includes electricians, carpenters, plumbers and more  

Transportation: includes service technicians, painters and heavy-duty equipment mechanics  
Manufacturing: includes trades such as tool & die cutters, millwrights, precision metal fabricators  

Service: includes butchers, cooks, landscapers  

Skilled trades are often overlooked by many as a career path. A lot of this is due to some misconceptions 

One of those misconceptions is that skilled trades are only for people “that don’t do well in school.” That’s simply not true.  

Skilled trades actually involve a lot of problem-solving, analytical thinking and technical know-how. For example, you could need to diagnose a problem for a sophisticated piece of equipment or computer software. You could have a bachelor’s degree and your master’s, but that won’t necessarily give you these kinds of skills.  

Becoming certified in a skilled trade takes a specific kind of education, one that involves not just theory, but hands-on learning and understanding complex machinery and equipment. They are professions where you need both think critically and work with your hands!  

Specializing in a skilled trade not only means less expensive post-secondary education, it could also mean a prosperous, well-paying career with lots of opportunities to move and grow. 

But what specific trades is Ontario’s food and beverage processing industry looking for right now? 

Skilled Trades in Demand in Ontario’s Food and Beverage Processing Industry 

Here are the top three: 

Millwright 

A millwright is a professional that installs, maintains, repairs and troubleshoots industrial equipment in factories and production plants. 

Throughout the process they are focused on adhering to food safety standards. They also design and fabricate equipment to improve how well factories are running.   

There are many Ontario food and beverage processing companies currently looking for Millwrights including: 

Maple Lodge Farms 

Bimbo Canada 

Gay Lea Foods

Electrician 

In the food and beverage processing industry, the electrician is responsible for the skilled tasks such as installing, maintaining, troubleshooting, repairing and modifying complex industrial equipment, processes and system. They perform preventative and corrective or equipment failures. 

Some of the Ontario food and beverage processing companies looking for Electricians right now include 

Griffith Foods 

Redpath Sugar 

Weston Foods 
 

Maintenance Mechanic/Technicians 

Maintenance mechanics/technicians and are responsible for the upkeep of the building and the company’s mechanical systems, such as heating and cooling systems and operational equipment. Sometimes, they split their time between repair, maintenance, and the installation of system components and office hours.  They are often on-call to perform emergency repairs, which necessitates the ability to troubleshoot promptly. People often come into these roles as millwrights or electricians. 

Some Ontario food and beverage processing companies currently looking for maintenance mechanics/technicians include: 

Leclerc 

Sonora Foods 

Gay Lea Foods 

 
You can learn more about the other types of skilled trades in the industry as well as some tips on how to get started here. 
 

CareersNOW! Mentorship Sessions 

 
Want to learn more about what a career in the food and beverage processing industry could look like for you?   

Sign up for one of CareersNOW!’s upcoming career mentorship sessions! Whether you’re a college or university student planning your career in the industry or just starting to think about your future, these mentorship sessions will help you the chance to virtually meet with leading professionals to get great career advice and learn about exciting career pathways.  The next session takes place on November 9. Sign up today! 

Get ready for your future in food!

Over the next several months, Food and Beverage Ontario will be providing free career mentorship and virtual career fairs through our partners, FoodGrads and Food Processing Skills Canada. Tell us you’re interested by filling in the form.

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