Why work in food and drink?

If you are a scientist, an ideas person or want to work in a dynamic and innovative business environment that offers fantastic progression opportunities food and drink can offer the career for you.

What career opportunities are available?

The Scottish food and drink industry is known across the world for our high quality, nutritious products and we are a vital part of the economy. To maintain this, we need innovators, scientists and engineers to develop and make new products, reformulate existing products, and ensure that we are environmentally responsible. We also need sales, marketing, finance, IT and other business skills. New markets and trends are creating many opportunities for business startups.

Tilda Lockdown Street Food Challenge 2021

Open to all S1 – 3 and S4 – S6 pupils across Scotland, the challenge is designed to develop employability skills and an understanding of careers in food and drink that supports healthy eating and social responsibility.

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More about our careers work

A Future in Food

Our skills initiative, A Future in Food, works with partners across Scotland to raise awareness of the career opportunities available in the Scottish food and drink industry. We help young people, educators, career influencers and parents understand these opportunities and the skills needed by employers.

The Scottish Government fund this work through the Scotland Food & Drink Partnership. Our Skills Manager Moira Stalker is on the Scotland Food & Drink People & Skills Board.

How do I get into a career in food and drink?

Opportunities to enter the industry exist at all levels. You can gain work experience while you are still at school by studying a Foundation Apprenticeship.

You can get a job straight from school and train as a Modern Apprentice.

Or there are qualifications at college and university that can help access a career in food and drink. You can also apply directly to work in the industry and work your way up, our employers offer good training and development opportunities.

View our careers route map for more information

Skills for resilience

These case studies illustrate how industry has responded to disruptors and how building a skilled workforce can make your businesses more resilient for the future.

Dawnfresh: Our people development programme futureproofs the business

Believing that great people make a great business, Dawnfresh works hard to be an employer of choice. Our investment in areas such as core skills, wellbeing and fair pay served us well during the Covid-19 pandemic. We currently have 50 apprentices, they help us improve the technical skills in the business.

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Mimi’s Bakehouse: How we hardwired adaptability into our business

When crisis hit our family-owned bakery, we were quickly able to adapt the business and move 100% online. The three key ingredients? Investment in digital, social media, and company culture.

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More skills for resilience case studies

Careers case studies

View our careers case studies for some inspiration

Technical & Procurement Manager, Agrico UK

Case Study: Gavin Prentice

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Founder, Genius Foods Ltd

Case study: Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne,

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All case studies

Key messages about working in the food and drink industry in Scotland

Resources have been has developed on behalf of the Scotland Food & Drink Partnership. They will help educators and career influencers better understand the wealth of career opportunities in the food and drink industry; locally, nationally and internationally. The language provides positive and consistent messages to use when talking to potential recruits.


View resources

For more information please contact: 

Related pages

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Becoming a Food and Drink Ambassador

Our ambassadors inspire young people to consider a career in food and drink. If you work in food and drink and would like to help motivate the next generation of recruits into the industry you can sign up as a food and drink ambassador.


Education and skills

The FDF is finding proactive solutions to develop a skills pipeline for our members. Through apprenticeships, T Levels and retraining we are building the tools needed to maintain a growing workforce.