Canning and Preserving Industry Workers


Canning and Preserving Industry Workers


Canning and preserving industry workers monitor equipment and perform routine tasks in food-processing plants that can, preserve, and quick-freeze such foods as vegetables, fruits, frozen dinners, jams, jellies, preserves, pickles, and soups. They also process and preserve seafood, including shrimp, oysters, crabs, clams, and fish. The U.S. Department of Labor considers canning and preserving food industry workers to be an occupational subset of packaging and filling machine operators and tenders. As of May 2018, there are approxima...

Quick Facts


Median Salary



Employment Prospects



Minimum Education Level

High School Diploma



Prior food preparation experience





Personality Traits



Although some products can be processed at any time during the year, the level of activity in many food-processing plants varies with the season, and earnings of workers vary accordingly. Larger plants overcome the seasonality of their food products by maintaining large inventories of raw foodstuffs, and workers for these plants generally work full time throughout the year. Earnings for workers...

Work Environment

Canning and preserving plants are located in many parts of the country. Most plants are located close to the supply source and are staffed by local people who sometimes hold other jobs as well. During harvest season, plants may operate 24 hours a day, with three work shifts.

In plants where food is frozen, some workers spend considerable time in temperatures that are well below freezing....


The use of automated equipment and computer technology and the consolidation of companies throughout the food processing, food packaging, and food canning industries means that fewer people will be needed to process, preserve, and can foods. Wherever it is efficient and economical, machines will take over the tasks that people have been doing. Therefore, the U.S. Department of Labor predicts th...