Career Conversations: “The food industry is a fantastic place to work”

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“The food industry is a fantastic place to work. It can be challenging, but it can be so much fun. You will always be learning.”

So says Rachel Auty, New Product Development Controller at Greencore.

Greencore make all sorts of food products that end up being sold in supermarkets, from soups, to sushi, and salads to sauces.

Rachel works in the prepared meals sector and in this episode of the Career Conversations series, she reveals all about the process of getting a new product to market – from brief to shelf.

It could all have been very different though. Rachel says a chance meeting on a bus when she was a teenager set her on her career path.

She says that day “when the stars aligned” is the reason she is so passionate about sharing information with young people at the start of their food careers: “So they don’t have to meet a certain person, on a certain bus, on a certain day to find out what they want to do.”

Rachel went on to study Food Marketing Management at Sheffield Hallam University and later became Marks and Spencer‘s first ever Product Development Graduate.

Listen on to find out about all the different product categories you can work in, how asking the right questions is key to success, and how Rachel stays on top of the all the latest food and drink trends.

Rachel Auty, NPD Controller, Prepared Meals, Greencore

Rachel has more than 17 years of product development experience working in the food industry, across multiple different sectors.

This journey has led her through some amazing adventures, she has worked in development within premium retail, food service and manufacturing, working for businesses both small and large.

It is all this varied experience, combined with a huge passion for food and customer-focused development that she takes to work with her every day.

Areas of Study:
• Sheffield Hallam University run a range of food centred courses, both undergrad and post-grad
Cardiff Metropolitan University
University of Reading
Harper Adams University
University of Leeds
Bath Spa University

Work placements:

For industrial placement schemes of food internships, most good universities with placement degrees have a good network of contacts for this, but if you want to do your own research, try big brands such as Co-op, Pepsico, McCain, and Bakkavor.

Who to follow on Instagram:
@mobkitchen
@5oclockapron
@poppycooks
@salihacooks
@sabrinaghayour
@HotDinners
@clerkenwellboyec1
@rachelaliceroddy
@georgiepuddingnpie
@felicitycloake
@aprilprestonandco

Follow Rachel too: @hungrytff_

Rachel also recommends…

Flourish in Food is an excellent new mentoring scheme for people starting out with their career in food.

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