Bakers (NOC 6332)

About this job

Bakers make bread, rolls, muffins, pies, pastries, cakes and cookies. They work in retail bakeries, pastry shops, restaurants and cafes of all sizes. They also work for supermarkets, hospitals, hotels, cruise lines, resorts, catering companies and large wholesale businesses that sell baked goods to retailers and other outlets. They may be employed full-time, part-time, on contract or self-employed. 

Bakers should be creative, detail-oriented and enjoy working with their hands. They must follow public health regulations and standards.

Watch the video below to learn what a typical day is like for a baker.

Common job titles
  • baker, hospitality
  • baker, pastry
  • baker, retail / grocery / supermarket
  • head baker
  • supervisor, bakery

Duties

Bakers:

  • Make dough for pies, bread and rolls, sweets and other baked products
  • Prepare batters for muffins, cookies, cakes, icings and frostings according to recipes or special customer orders
  • Run baking machinery, such as high-volume mixing machines, ovens and other equipment to produce large quantities of baked goods
  • Mix and bake doughs and batters
  • Frost and decorate cakes or other baked goods
  • Make sure the product meets quality standards
  • Create and follow a production schedule
  • Determine the supplies to purchase and how much is needed
  • Purchase baking supplies
  • Make sure the production process meets health and safety standards
  • Maintain a clean kitchen/production area
  • May supervise sales of baked goods
  • May hire, train and supervise baking and kitchen staff

Work environment

Employees work shifts and may work early mornings, evenings, weekends and holidays. While many bakers work as part of a team, they may also need to work on their own, depending on their job description and the size of the company they work for.  

Bakers often work with large mixers, ovens and other small-scale industrial equipment. They typically work in hot, steam-filled work areas and must be able to lift heavy bags of flour, sugar and other ingredients. People in this job must do repetitive actions such as scooping, rolling and forming the dough. Bakers must understand how to work safely to avoid accidents and injuries.

Bakers usually work under strict production deadlines. They must manage the preparation and baking time of different baked goods, which can cause stress. They must ensure that the baked goods are consistent in quality, taste and texture. They must also make sure that health, safety and sanitation guidelines are always followed during the production and cleanup processes.

Insights from industry

More and more, consumers want choice in the products they eat, including baked goods. For some consumers, this means a preference for healthy, high-end products and specialty baked goods, such as gluten free, dairy free or high protein items. 

There are now many bakeries that offer organic products to meet specialty demands. Some larger companies, such as supermarket chains and hotels, have responded to these demands by opting for on-site bakeries. These trends have created a demand for skilled bakers, particularly those with trade certification.

Working for a small bakery may provide more opportunity to be creative and hands-on in providing ideas for what products might be baked and sold. The job of baker at a larger business, such as a restaurant, hotel or wholesale bakery, may be more task-related because the baking is done in huge commercial-size batches, which means that precise measurement, timing and more operational aspects are the focus. 

Supply chain issues can make it challenging for a baker to get the ingredients or supplies needed to fulfil the production schedule. Smaller bakeries, cafes and restaurants may need their bakers to replace ingredients or to think of a different product to bake using the ingredients available. 

Social media has created opportunity for people with baking skills to show off their abilities. Some bakers have created small home-based businesses by taking orders via social media platforms or by creating sponsored content that is paid for by the companies that manufacture baking ingredients and tools. Bakers must have a business licence and follow all health and safety protocols when selling goods to members of the public, no matter where they bake.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

Individuals may begin their career as production assistants or assistants to bakers. They may advance to apprentice baker positions.

Completing an apprenticeship and gaining additional experience and training, makes it possible for workers to progress to baking executives or supervisors. Experienced bakers may be asked to manage a bakery or may choose to start their own businesses.

Additional resources