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Looking for employment security? Want to join a profession that is highly likely to ensure employment even in dire circumstance? The answer may lie with the food and consumer products industry

It is “fast-paced, innovative, a part of our daily lives, comparatively recession proof as it deals with goods such as toiletries, paper products, food and beverage,” says Sangita Chaubal, Parmalat recruitment specialist, hence making it a career that has the ability to resist adverse economic conditions.

She says working in this industry “offers a wide variety of career options from supply chain, to finance, sales and marketing to manufacturing and production.”

Working in this industry can lead to career opportunities at multinationals thereby making global careers a reality. Not only that, it also offers extensive opportunities in various academic fields—supply chain management, engineering, sales and marketing, finance and accounting (including controls and audits), IT, and human resources.

Chaubal explains that careers in the Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) industry in Canada are wide and varied.  

“You can start as a route accounting clerk and work your way up in supply chain as a team leader in a distribution centre or become an analyst in logistics and supply chain. You could work in the manufacturing facilities—plants in production, maintenance or sanitation and food safety after completing a degree in food science or chemical engineering and build your career to plant manager level, or you could start in retails sales and move up on sales side.”

The recruitment specialist further elaborates the various roles available in marketing, such as, marketing coordinator, assistant brand manager leading up to senior positions such as director and VP of marketing and sales. Chaubal goes on to talk about roles in the production/operations environments—such as production and maintenance technicians and supervisors which are  a huge component of the consumer packaged goods industry.

And she says there are always “human resource opportunities in the corporate offices as well as in the manufacturing facilities. Last, but not the least, finance is critical with accounts receivables and payable, sales analyst, pricing analyst, accounting and internal controls.”

The diversity in the field of CPG extends beyond business-related studies. According to the Canadian Dairy CommissionFood and Consumer Products of Canada is an association representing the food and consumer products industry. This industry employs close to 300,000 people across Canada and is the largest employer in manufacturing.

The Canadian Dairy Commission also reports that deliveries of the manufacturing sector of the food, beverage and consumer product industry total approximately $86 billion each year and generate almost $22 billion annually to the GDP. Chaubal says that the CPG industry is “poised for growth with globalization playing a big part.”

Like all other jobs, a career in the CPG industry also provides with ample opportunity for personal growth.

Chaubal says that among the different interpersonal skills learned are skills relating to “negotiation, decision making, problem solving and thinking on your feet, and project management. You can also add to your educational qualifications by taking relevant courses and certifications in your area of expertise—like finance, supply chain and others.

Photo: Noel Hendrickson/Thinkstock