Food Science Technicians

Description

Perform standardized qualitative and quantitative tests to determine physical or chemical properties of food or beverage products.

Tasks

  • Conduct standardized tests on food, beverages, additives, or preservatives to ensure compliance with standards and regulations regarding factors such as color, texture, or nutrients.
  • Provide assistance to food scientists or technologists in research and development, production technology, or quality control.
  • Compute moisture or salt content, percentages of ingredients, formulas, or other product factors, using mathematical and chemical procedures.
  • Record or compile test results or prepare graphs, charts, or reports.
  • Clean and sterilize laboratory equipment.
  • Analyze test results to classify products or compare results with standard tables.
  • Taste or smell foods or beverages to ensure that flavors meet specifications or to select samples with specific characteristics.
  • Examine chemical or biological samples to identify cell structures or to locate bacteria or extraneous material, using a microscope.
  • Mix, blend, or cultivate ingredients to make reagents or to manufacture food or beverage products.
  • Measure, test, or weigh bottles, cans, or other containers to ensure that hardness, strength, or dimensions meet specifications.
  • Prepare slides and incubate slides with cell cultures.
  • Order supplies needed to maintain inventories in laboratories or in storage facilities of food or beverage processing plants.

Knowledge

Sales and Marketing
Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
Geography
Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
Foreign Language
Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.
Sociology and Anthropology
Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
Building and Construction
Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
Philosophy and Theology
Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.
History and Archeology
Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
Therapy and Counseling
Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.

Skills

Operation and Control
Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
Technology Design
Generating or adapting equipment and technology to serve user needs.
Programming
Writing computer programs for various purposes.
Management of Financial Resources
Determining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures.
Installation
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.

Abilities

Wrist-Finger Speed
The ability to make fast, simple, repeated movements of the fingers, hands, and wrists.
Response Orientation
The ability to choose quickly between two or more movements in response to two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures). It includes the speed with which the correct response is started with the hand, foot, or other body part.
Sound Localization
The ability to tell the direction from which a sound originated.
Night Vision
The ability to see under low light conditions.
Gross Body Equilibrium
The ability to keep or regain your body balance or stay upright when in an unstable position.
Dynamic Flexibility
The ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with your body, arms, and/or legs.
Extent Flexibility
The ability to bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
Dynamic Strength
The ability to exert muscle force repeatedly or continuously over time. This involves muscular endurance and resistance to muscle fatigue.
Explosive Strength
The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
Rate Control
The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene.

Work Activities

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

Interests

Realistic
Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
Investigative
Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Conventional
Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Artistic
Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
Enterprising
Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
Social
Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Work Style

Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Adaptability/Flexibility
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Stress Tolerance
Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Initiative
Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Self Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Analytical Thinking
Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Independence
Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.

Work Values

Support
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
Relationships
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Achievement
Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Independence
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Working Conditions
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Recognition
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

Lay Titles

Beer Brewer
Bench Technician
Biotechnician
Bottle House Quality Control Technician
Brew Master
Brewer
Butter Fat Tester
Cheese Tester
Chemist
Confectionery Technologist
Cream Tester
Dairy and Food Laboratory Assistant
Dairy Lab Technician
Dairy Technologist
Dairy Tester
Feed Mill Lab Technician
Fermentologist
Food Analyst
Food Critic
Food Products Tester
Food Quality Technician
Food Science Technician
Food Taster
Food Technologist
Food Tester
Fruit Tester
Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point Coordinator (HACCP Coordinator)
Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point Technician (HACCP Technician)
Juice Standardizer
Juice Tester
Laboratory Analyst (Lab Analyst)
Laboratory Assistant (Lab Assistant)
Laboratory Auditor (Lab Auditor)
Laboratory Technician (Lab Technician)
Malt Specifications Control Assistant
Microbiologist
Milk Tester
Operations Technician
Process Quality Technician
Processing Technician
Quality Analyst
Quality Assurance Analyst (QA Analyst)
Quality Assurance Inspector (QA Inspector)
Quality Assurance Laboratory Technician (QA Laboratory Technician)
Quality Assurance Manager (QA Manager)
Quality Assurance Supervisor (QA Supervisor)
Quality Assurance Technician (QA Technician)
Quality Control Analyst (QC Analyst)
Quality Control Manager (QC Manager)
Quality Control Technician (QC Technician)
Quality Technician
Research and Development Laboratory Technician (R & D Lab Technician)
Scientist
Sensory Analyst
Taste Tester
Technical Services Analyst
Technician
Test Baker
Yeast Culture Developer

National Wages and Employment Info

Median Wages (2008):
$16.38 hourly, $34,070 annual.
Employment (2008):
18,280 employees