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Long-term on-the-job training is the most common path to gain the skills necessary to become a baker. Some bakers start their careers through an apprenticeship program or by attending a technical or culinary school. No formal education is required.Education
Although there are no formal education requirements to become a baker, some candidates attend a technical or culinary school. Programs generally last from 1 to 2 years and cover nutrition, food safety, and basic math. To enter these programs, candidates may be required to have a high school diploma or equivalent.Training
Most bakers learn their skills through long-term on-the-job training, typically lasting 1 to 3 years. Some employers may provide apprenticeship programs for aspiring bakers. Bakers in specialty bakery shops and grocery stores often start as apprentices or trainees and learn the basics of baking, icing, and decorating. They usually study topics such as nutrition, sanitation procedures, and basic baking. Some participate in correspondence study and may work toward a certificate in baking.
In manufacturing facilities, commercial bakers learn how to operate and maintain the industrial mixing and blending equipment that is used to produce baked goods. They also learn how to combine ingredients and how temperature and humidity affect ingredients and the baking process.Other Experience
Some bakers learn their skills through work experience related to baking. For example, they may start as a baker’s assistant and progress into a full-fledged baker as they learn baking techniques.Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations
Certification is voluntary and shows that a baker has the skills and knowledge to work at a retail baking establishment.
The Retail Bakers of America offers certification in four levels of competence, with a focus on several topics, including baking sanitation, management, retail sales, and staff training. Those who wish to become certified must satisfy a combination of education and experience requirements before taking an exam.
The education and experience requirements vary by the level of certification desired. For example, a Certified Journey Baker requires no education but must have at least 1 year of work experience. A Certified Baker must have 4 years of work experience and 30 hours of sanitation coursework, and a Certified Master Baker must have 8 years of work experience, 30 hours of sanitation coursework, and 30 hours of professional development education.Important Qualities
Detail oriented. Bakers must closely monitor their products in the oven to keep them from burning. They also should have an eye for detail because many pastries and cakes require intricate decorations.
Math skills. Bakers must possess basic math skills, especially knowledge of fractions, in order to precisely mix recipes, weigh ingredients, or adjust mixes.
Physical stamina. Bakers stand on their feet for extended periods while they prepare dough, monitor baking, or package baked goods.
Physical strength. Bakers should be able to lift and carry heavy bags of flour and other ingredients, which may weigh up to 50 pounds.
Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Bread Baker
Top Careers After Bread Baker
Hispanic or Latino12.7%
Black or African American0.4%
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Culinary Institute of America21.7%
Johnson & Wales University10.0%
Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts10.0%
West Virginia University5.0%
Springfield Technical Community College3.3%
Alabama Southern Community College3.3%
Mt. Hood Community College3.3%
University of Kentucky3.3%
Lane Community College3.3%
University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee3.3%
Brookdale Community College3.3%
Arizona State University3.3%
Art Institute of Pittsburgh3.3%
Kansas State University3.3%
The Institute of Culinary Education School3.3%
Western Michigan University3.3%
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|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Aria Resort & Casino||Las Vegas, NV||Feb 11, 2011||$48,001|
|Baker, Bread and Pastry||One Hong, Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||Mar 31, 2008||$42,000|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Boustany Investment Group, Inc.(Alladin's Eatery)||Burke, VA||Feb 27, 2012||$34,902|
|Bread Baker||Hye Bakery Corporation||Montebello, CA||May 25, 2010||$33,914 -
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Genino, Inc., D/B/A VICO Restaurant||New York, NY||Mar 14, 2011||$32,469|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Burnside Avenue Donuts, Inc.||Lawrence, NY||Aug 15, 2008||$32,328|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Gateaux Bakery Corp||Closter, NJ||Jul 06, 2010||$31,970|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Gateaux Bakery Corp||Closter, NJ||Sep 01, 2010||$31,970|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Ooshie Corp Subsid. of Rory Lee, Inc.||Wayne, NJ||Nov 01, 2012||$31,803|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Fejagee, Inc.||Little Ferry, NJ||Nov 08, 2012||$31,803|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Tatton Enterprise||Fort Lauderdale, FL||May 09, 2011||$31,500|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||La Patisserie||Lyndhurst, NJ||Dec 20, 2007||$31,430|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Ruthy's Cheesecake & Rugelach, Inc.||New York, NY||Apr 15, 2009||$31,096|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Caroline's, Inc.||Annapolis, MD||Feb 10, 2010||$30,971|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Perall .Inc.||Pine Beach, NJ||Mar 06, 2008||$26,818|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Perall, Inc.||Pine Beach, NJ||Nov 03, 2008||$26,818|
|Bread Baker||Shivshakti Sandwich Inc.||Downers Grove, IL||Jul 12, 2010||$26,700 -
|Bread Baker||Shivshakti Sandwich Inc.||Downers Grove, IL||Jun 23, 2011||$26,500|
|Bread Baker||Jung I.Kim D/B/A Shilra Bakery||Hackensack, NJ||Mar 22, 2010||$26,359|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||G.P.K Restaurant Enterprises, Corp.||Great Neck, NY||Sep 18, 2008||$26,338|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Kamawi, Inc.||Lorton, VA||Dec 24, 2008||$25,712|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Seoul Rice Cake||Baltimore, MD||Jun 17, 2009||$25,482|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Arandas Bakery # 4, Inc.||Houston, TX||Dec 22, 2011||$24,274|
|Bakers, Bread & Pastry||Jinon Corporation DBA Nijiya Market||Torrance, CA||Sep 18, 2008||$24,063|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||One Hong, Inc.||Los Angeles, CA||Mar 24, 2008||$23,982|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||P. Connection, Inc. T/A Donut Connection||Lexington Park, MD||Dec 08, 2008||$23,729|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Arandas Bakery #1||Houston, TX||May 15, 2008||$23,462|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Hot and Crusty||New York, NY||Dec 30, 2009||$23,249|
|Bakers, Bread and Pastry||Gold Beach, Inc.||Claremore, OK||Oct 23, 2012||$23,172|
|Baker, Bread and Pastry||DAOU Market, Inc.||Fall River, MA||Jul 07, 2008||$22,832|
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