David  Kay

David Kay

Operations Improvement Manager, Hubbard Foods Ltd

In a nutshell: Managing improvement projects in the factory where the breakfast cereals are produced and packed. The projects are initiated to make Hubbards smarter, faster and better at manufacturing quality food products.

Why? “I can facilitate changes that provide a positive difference for the company and our people. It’s very rewarding to see the improvements in action.”

Pathway: Havelock North High School, final year subjects: Biology, Calculus, Chemistry, Geography, Physics
Massey University - Palmerston North: Bachelor of Technology, majoring in Food Technology

Earning: Starting salary $40-50,000

I've always had an interest in both food and engineering, so studying Food Technology was a logical choice.

My Bachelor of Technology degree opens doors into a wide range of careers. You’re not just limited to one job – this degree allows you to do all sorts of work within the food industry. And the qualification is very well recognised globally.

A Food Technology degree can take you into management roles in Quality Assurance, Operations, New Product Development or Marketing. Already I have had two quite different jobs within the one company.

I spent my first two years at Hubbards in the New Product Development team, where I had a creative role in taking a product all the way from the original marketing concept to the supermarket shelves. My work involved developing the recipe and scaling it up to full factory production.

I was involved in the recipe development of a new cereal called Real Flakes. It won three awards at the 2011 New Zealand Food Awards.

Recently I moved into an Operation Improvements role, where my job is to improve processes, drive efficiency, and make it easier for the factory and packing hall staff.

My work is a mixture of bigger projects and solving technical and operational problems as they occur in the factory and packing hall. My work is all about streamlining the manufacturing process. Fundamentally, my job delivers more profit to the business.

I’ve been involved in the commissioning of new production lines that have doubled our production output and halved our wastage. It’s very satisfying.

Posted February 2012

Follow this pathway:

Degree in Food Science or Technology

Read the company profile

Hubbards Foods

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