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Grocery Chain Bakeries

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Hi all, I was given a chance to apply at one of our grocery chains for a bakery position.It would only be part time if I get it.But would I gain a lot of experience by doing this. Are the grocery chain bakeries a lot different than regular bakeries? Would like some feedback.Thanks.
post #2 of 4
It really varies. No two bakeries are the same anyway.
Some are "scratch"(made with the ingredients and mixed) some are "proof and bake" product may come in frozen or partially baked.
Did the tell you if they are scratch.
Which ever way it goes, your in a bakery. You may even be doing the menial of tasks(this is the best thing) it gives you time to keep your eyes and nose open.
PM me with the chain, I did a Corp,R&D for a large chain when the upscale markets were coming in , and I can probably give/or get you some insight.
BTW any experience, is experience. It's never a waste, even if you don't learn a lot. I learned production method and proceedures from the old time grocery bakers that seemed light years ahead of the hotels.
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Thanks Pan.I haven't applied yet.My current work has this thing about moonlighting so I am going to have to talk to them first then that will determine where I go from there. I really need the experience even if it is menial tasks. I will insure I ask about scratch or proof and bake though. What do you think about the Wilton Cake Decorating Classes was thinking of taking course 1. Is this advanteous or should I consider another avenue?
post #4 of 4
When I was out of high school, I transitioned into the Bakery of Safeway and worked there for about a year and a half. Some of what we did was scratch, and some was proof and bake.

One thing I really enjoyed was working with the different types of bread and understand "how it all works" I actually wound up modifying the french bread recipe a little bit to produce a larger bread. (this was done by adding a certain amount of old fashioned donut mix... believe it or not)

Anyhow, grocery store bakeries tend to change their operations every couple years... in the bakery I am referring to, we did alot of scratch baking and changed our volume based on demand and such... THEN about a year later, we switched over to the concept of cycle-baking (making large volumes and freezing portions to rotate through a cycle). I hated it. I felt dishonest as a baker knowing that the breads some of my customers where buying wasn't as "fresh" as they were lead to believe. (Of course the product tasted fine, but... it just didn't seem right to me.)

Anyhow, just being out of high school I was only there for a year and a half, learned alot and then went into my current field of IT. (been doing IT for 10 years now). (thats about to change though, I am going to quit my job and goto culinary school)

Anyway, I hope that helps... good luck!
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