Process Operator - Food Manufacturing (Apprenticeship)


To effectively participate in remote learning, students in this program must have reliable Internet access and meet these device requirements.

About the Program

The Process Operator - Food Manufacturing (Apprenticeship) program is designed to provide the student with the theoretical knowledge and practical skills needed to pursue a career in the food processing industry. The program is based on the OCOT Schedule of Training and consists of 300 in-class hours (Level One - 87 hours, Level Two - 153 hours, Level Three - 60 hours). The following areas are covered in the program:
- food safety and security
- food manufacturing and the environment
- electrical and instrumentation techniques
- mechanical techniques
- communication and computer skills
- continuous quality improvement

In addition to the above, the apprentice is required to complete 4,000 on-the-job hours in order to become a journeyperson. See Apprenticeship - General Information.

Program Information

Length: 300-hour Certificate program delivered in three components
Location: Cambridge (Fountain Street)
Start: Varies

Admission Requirements


Tuition & Fees

Fees are set by MLTSD as per the Offer of Classroom Training.
Books, safety equipment, tools, and parking fees are additional.
Refer to the apprentice orientation page for further details on these additional fees (First Day Checklist).
Applicants are registered on a first-come, first-served basis.

Graduate Opportunities

Graduates will experience employment in the largest manufacturing sector in Canada and may find work in small-, medium- and large-sized food manufacturing companies in skilled positions such as machine operator, maintenance technician, and leadership roles.

For more details on related occupations, job market information and career opportunities, see the Government of Canada website:

Pathways & Credit Transfer

For more information regarding Pathways, Credit Transfer or if you're interested in pursuing a related post-secondary program email

Trade Equivalency Assessment

If you have experience working in a trade-specific area from outside of Canada or within Canada, you may want to pursue challenging your Certificate of Qualification. For more information on Trade Equivalency Assessments contact 1-855-299-0028 or email at Many Ontario colleges offer pre-certification courses in a variety of trade areas that assist you in preparing to write or re-write your certification exam. These also serve as excellent refresher courses. For more information on part-time pre-certification programs to assist you in preparing for the Certificate of Qualification examination, check out the Conestoga College Continuing Education offerings at contact 519-824-9390 ext 6148.

Program Courses

Course Details (0724)
Course Code Course Title and Description
Level 1
FOOD1115 Food Safety Level 1

Description: The Food Safety course is designed to provide the student with general knowledge of food safety including food safety hazards, good manufacturing practices and food safety systems, as well as basic knowledge of food plant security and of the impact of food manufacturing on the environment. The course covers Food Safety, Food Plant Security and Food Manufacturing - Environmental Management. The content is based on the MTCU schedule of training for a Process Operator - Food Manufacturing apprenticeship program.
Hours: 87
Credits: 6

Level 2
FOOD1130 Electrical and Instrumentation - Processing

Description: This course covers training in the fundamentals of electrical theory and operating principles and their application to a typical food and/or beverage processing line. The apprentice is given fundamental skills in working with PLC, ControlLogix systems as well as trouble shooting and minor corrections for optimum performance of AC/DC electrical controls and automatic systems. The apprentice works with typical instrumentation systems, sensors and digital control systems found in the food and beverage processing industry.
Hours: 96
Credits: 7

FOOD1140 Mechanical Techniques in Food Processing

Description: The successful completion of this course enables the apprentice to apply skills to work safely with the mechanical components of a food or beverage processing line using tools and equipment to make adjustments to conveyors and conveying systems, transfer mediums and adjust and trouble shoot pneumatic/hydraulic and mechanical systems. The apprentice also studies the implications of work order management systems and documentation requirements and the fundamentals of lubrication.
Hours: 39
Credits: 3

FOOD1150 Communication and Computer Skills

Description: Apprentices will learn how to use spreadsheet and word processing software to generate reports and communicate effectively with others.
Hours: 18
Credits: 1

Level 3
FOOD2000 Continuous Quality Improvement

Description: Through successful completion of this course the apprentice will be able to apply training in Statistical Process Control, Lean and TPM concepts, six sigma concepts and problem solving techniques to make continuous improvements to the process. The apprentice will also develop an awareness of equipment failure analysis techniques, energy management techniques and learn how to use effective operator preventive maintenance systems.
Hours: 60
Credits: 4

Program Outcomes

Program Handbook



The College reserves the right to alter information including requirements and fees and to cancel at any time a program, course, or program major or option; to change the location and/or term in which a program or course is offered; to change the program curriculum as necessary to meet current competencies in the job market or for budgetary reasons; or to withdraw an offer of admission both prior to and after its acceptance by an applicant or student because of insufficient applications or registrations, over-acceptance of offers of admission, budgetary constraints, or for other such reasons. In the event the College exercises such a right, the College’s sole liability will be the return of monies paid by the applicant or student to the College.

Students actively registered in cohort delivered programs who take longer than the designed program length of time to complete their studies are accountable for completing any new or additional courses that may result due to changes in the program of study. Unless otherwise stated, students registered in non-cohort delivered programs must complete the program of study within seven years of being admitted to the program.