The problem: A shortage of qualified technicians
Food and beverage companies are facing a skills gap that is impacting their bottom line.
- In a recent survey of food industry leaders, respondents said that finding qualified technicians is a “major problem.”
- The technician workforce is shrinking as veteran technicians retire.
- The industry needs more technicians who can manage and service increasingly complex equipment and machinery.
- The role of a technician requires knowledge in several areas, and there is no nationally coordinated program to prepare future technicians.
- Training of a newly hired technician can take 18 months or longer, driving up the cost of hiring and replacing technicians and undermining the optimal performance of processing equipment.
The Solution: The FIT program
The Food Processing Educational Consortium (FPEC) was created with the mission:
To create, develop, and implement a career path for technicians that provides foundational and ongoing education for individuals who demonstrate the qualities and attributes of qualified, certified technicians in all segments of the processing, packaging, and food and beverage industries. We will actively recruit qualified candidates and stakeholders/partners to this program.
What We’re Doing
- Working with a nationally recognized vocational college with campuses across the U.S. to build a new two-year degree covering mechanical and electrical engineering principles
- Creating a new professional credential, the FIT (Food Industry Technician) Certification, which blends academic knowledge, practical experience, and additional training to prepare new technicians
- Offering existing technicians the opportunity to pursue career growth and development by earning a FIT Certification
Benefits of participating in the FIT program:
- Access to a pool of qualified technicians to bridge your skills gap
- Decreased time and cost associated with technician training
- The opportunity to help develop Food Industry Technician training programs and career paths