In “The Workforce Gap in U.S. Commercial Baking,” the message on training was clear: bakery manufacturers desperately need a deeper pool of highly skilled, flexible staff to fill the gap left by retiring baby boomers. At the same time, those being recruited into the baking industry lack the technical baking skills needed to do the job.
The 2016 study, co-sponsored by the American Bakers Association and American Society of Baking, affirmed what AIB International already knew: that technical bakery skills are in demand and finding the time and resources critical to success is a mounting challenge.
In 2016, AIB International rose to that challenge for industrial bakery manufacturers with the launch of Certified Bread Specialist Industrial. Called “CBS Industrial” for short, the program blends 28 hours of online learning with two short in-person seminars to verify that course participants can apply what they learned in a production setting.
“For nearly 100 years, AIB has brought the latest in baking training to the commercial baking industry,” said Brian Strouts, Vice President, Baking and Food Technical Services. “We are focused on growing our online training portfolio because we know how hard it is to take time away for training. Convenience and relevance are key to meeting the needs of today’s commercial baking operations.”
CBS Industrial covers topics including baker’s math and science, ingredient functionality, manufacturing processes, quality and troubleshooting. Though the online modules are intended to be taken as a certification, they are also flexible enough to be taken a la carte.
To address the fast-changing regulatory landscape AIB International has also added HARPC Online to their food safety portfolio. This entirely online course is a partnership with ImEpik.
“With new requirements around the preventive controls plan, our clients are challenged to provide consistent, documented food safety training for their personnel who support the Preventive Controls Qualified Individual,” said Anthony Raschke, Director of Innovation, Food Safety Services. “This course is critical to meeting the industry demand for food safety team members in FDA regulated plants.”
AIB International’s HACCP Online course continues to be popular, as are several on-demand webinars tackling topics such as FSMA readiness, getting ready for a FDA inspection, the basics of preventive controls, and advice for transitioning to the FDA’s new nutrition facts panel. Later this year, AIB will also relaunch Food Defense Coordinator Online. The course is being renovated and will offer the latest in defense practices aligned with FSMA requirements.