If wish I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard someone say that young people don’t think the food industry is ‘sexy’ enough. I could have paid off the collective student debt in the US! I’ve heard it a lot.
Industry employers as well as educators from various universities and colleges have indicated that it’s the impression many young people have. In fact, just last night I read an article from Food Dive with Mike Robach, VP Cargill where he was quoted in the third sentence!
The perception that its not very exciting or appealing unfortunately results in a lack of interest in food related programs and consequently less interest in careers in the sector.
First things first, when I talk about the Food Industry, I’m not talking about chefs. I’m referring to the people who make the food that we buy at the grocery store, the farmers, the policy makers etc. etc.
What do you think?
I’ve had the privilege of getting to know a bunch of students and grads who are destined for a career in the Food & Beverage Industry. I’ve shared their personal stories, worked with some of them and most of all, I’ve seen their passion and intention to make a difference.
I’ve met a student who is dedicating herself to a career in Food Safety. Pretty soon travel, great money and a job where she will help put safe food into people’s mouths will become her profession. She may have to wear a hair net and lab coat on occasion, but who said hair nets can’t be sexy?
I met a recent grad who’s starting her own food packaging business. She is dedicated to saving the planet and see’s a great opportunity to do that focusing on food packaging. Creative ‘out of the box’ thinkers aren’t sexy?
I’ve watched a room full of students and grads listen intently to a panel of Food Policy experts. I can see why people would think there’s nothing more unattractive than individuals who exercise their right to grow, sell, and eat healthy food. I can barely look at folks who care about healthy fresh food being available to everyone. Food that is nutritious, affordable, culturally-appropriate, and grown locally and who care for the well-being of the land, workers and animals. I mean….gross right?!?!
On a daily basis I am approached by industry professionals interested in the FoodGrads platform. They ask “How can I help”? In my experience this industry attracts the good people, the nurturers, those who inherently wish to feed people, the most ‘down to earth’ and genuine members of the public. By offering support to the next generation of food professionals, they clearly care about tomorrow , its not just about a pay cheque today.
A company or industry is only ever as good as the people it attracts to work in it. So the question remains….
What makes an industry ‘sexy’?
Apart from the porn industry, which speaks for itself LOL. What makes an industry ‘sexy’? What are the elements that make a profession sexy? Money? Title?
I mean, it’s one of the essentials of life. We have to eat. And so I think it’s important that people kind of embrace that responsibility- Mike Robach, VP Cargill
Tell me what you think?
Please tell me your perception of the food industry, whether you are a member or not. Come on food pros, tell us why food is a sexy industry!