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Research and Development

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hi :smiles:,
I'm currently a Pastry Arts student and am exploring the various aspects of potential career options. I'm interested in finding out more about the careers that a Pastry Arts graduate could have in the Research and Development Field. I'm discovering that I'm more talented in the creative thinking behind Pastry (and I like it better), than actually making Production items for a bakery or restaurant. If anyone can give me some insight or any knowledge on this, I would be really greatful :roll:. Thank You!!
I often wonder what he's feeling.
Has he ever heard a word I've said?
Look at him now in the mirror dreaming
What is happening in his head?
Reply
I often wonder what he's feeling.
Has he ever heard a word I've said?
Look at him now in the mirror dreaming
What is happening in his head?
Reply
post #2 of 13
In my experience, very rarely is someone lucky enough to go from school right into the R&D phase.
Generally, but not exclusively, one has to work their way into that role.

I'd definitely recommend joning the RCA because there are a lot of good contacts and resources there.

You really want to have a decent pratical background experience before thinking about anything big time, but smaller scale opportunities might present themselves. Especially if you're a lucky person.

I've found the most rewarding R&D roles are usually working for a company with a good healthy R&D budget, where you are only limited by your imagination and not budgets.

Just my two cents.

Cat Man
post #3 of 13
Hello Adayinthelife,
I would have to agree with Cat Man. To get to an R&D position it will probably take a minimum of 5 years experience. They usually want someone who has gone through making all the usuall stuff and has had time to master their craft. So then that person can master new things and make changes because they know the product so well...

But definitely shoot for that goal. If you want to be in R&D then make that goal to be in R&D within a certain amount of time and go for it...just figure out what jobs would be best on a resume and for your on skills to get into R&D in any specific field in culinary...

Do you have a specific field in mind? Breads, cakes, confections, pastries?

Robert
Chocolate Guild :: The Chocolate Connoisseur's Home Base
post #4 of 13
If I may suggest, contact the RCA (Research Chef's Assoc.) and use their infrastructure to further your desire to be in R&D. Membership has it's advantages.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank you for all the replies :smiles:! I've been giving it some thought and have decided that it may be best to complete my Associates Degree in Pastry and then perhaps look into a Bachelors in Food Science. Joining the RCA seems like a good step and they have lots of clinics to go to, as well. No, I have not thought about what type of research I'd want to do yet. Probably not breads, though. Also, after graduating from school, what type of job would someone in R&D get in order to work their way up?
I often wonder what he's feeling.
Has he ever heard a word I've said?
Look at him now in the mirror dreaming
What is happening in his head?
Reply
I often wonder what he's feeling.
Has he ever heard a word I've said?
Look at him now in the mirror dreaming
What is happening in his head?
Reply
post #6 of 13
Depends on what type of R&D you want to do. You can be a Chef in R&D or a Food Science Professional in R&D. If you want to be a R&D Chef then you just want to gain as many skills in your specific craft/area of interest. If you want to do the food science end then I would suggest getting right into a low position in a food science position...

Robert
Chocolate Guild :: The Chocolate Connoisseur's Home Base
post #7 of 13
These days food companies want RnD chefs with a degree in Food Science as well.

The RCA seems very accepting if you're a chef and you have a culinary degree. IMO the RCA is for people who can't cut it in the ACF. My pointed opinion.
post #8 of 13
The RCA seems very accepting if you're a chef and you have a culinary degree. IMO the RCA is for people who can't cut it in the ACF. My pointed opinion.[/quote]
I could and still can cut it in the trenches, R&D is significantly more complicated than line work. Imagine creating and standardizing all your line dishes on a daily basis, then tell me the RCA is for chef's who can't cut it in the trenches! Give your head a shake!!!
post #9 of 13
I could and still can cut it in the trenches, R&D is significantly more complicated than line work. Imagine creating and standardizing all your line dishes on a daily basis, then tell me the RCA is for chef's who can't cut it in the trenches! Give your head a shake!!![/quote]

Exactly what I said. I know exactly what R&D entails. RCA chefs are severely lacking in the area of food science. They take one test based on Food Science 101 and think they know a whole heckuva lot. They're nice to me and resentful of my wife. I guess you get different mileage than me.
post #10 of 13
I have never taken a food science course, & have my red seal as a journeyman. 25 years in kitchens, and an active member of the BCCA, CCFCC, WACS, and RCA. Perhaps I know of what I speak.
post #11 of 13
Nice credentials, I applaud you for sticking with your craft, but it doesn't change the way I feel.

I too, have plenty of insight into R&D since I have to live with it day in day out.
post #12 of 13
Guys
Creativity, practical knowledge and experiential relevance are far more valuable and effective than a food science degree.
Food Science is exactly that, science.
Yet ironically, creative culinary is an art.

I worked for years in R&D for a major international casual dining chain and people with food science backgrounds, but little practical experience often ended up being part of the meal, not part of the creative ideation.

Cat Man
post #13 of 13
creativity can come with owning your own company, designing your own products....it's different than working for a major corporation.

a good friend of mine's husband is the head of R&D for Panera. He developed most flavor profiles by going through the cereal isle at the grocery store. He launched the artisan breads.....Mike was at the original store here is STL....
no baking school experience...nor food science for that matter. But head R&D at his kitchen table for the fastest growing bakery/restaurant in the US

Kuan indeed lives day in day out with R&D and knows intimately what it takes to put out a new national product......as well as producing consistancy in kitchens.

Some of the bakers on this site that have worked for restaurants (usually fine dining) or had their own shops, make wonderfully creative pastries.....

There are all kinds of options open for you, it's probably a good idea to get a feel for how you want to spend your days.
I was rereading Pierre Hermes pastry book yesterday and am looking forward to playing with his adaptations of classic recipes.
cooking with all your senses.....
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cooking with all your senses.....
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