Food and Drink Advanced Technical Operator Apprenticeship Level 3 | Bridgwater & Taunton College

Course Overview

Begin your apprenticeship journey at BTC by applying for an apprenticeship on our website or through our prospectus form. Please apply for a full-time course as your second option. Then, have a look at relevant vacancies by visiting our vacancy page. If you haven’t found a suitable vacancy, you will automatically be placed into our Talent Pool. As a member of our Talent Pool, you will be the first to hear about new vacancies and we offer support with CVs, interview techniques, employability skills and much more!

Food and Drink AdvancedTechnical Operators work in one of the largest, most dynamic and fastest growing sectors of industry. Every day, producers, manufacturers and retailers make and sell millions of innovative food products to consumers in the UK and around the world. This includes drinks, cakes, biscuits, ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook food, sandwiches, wraps, fresh fruit and salads. It is imperative that apprentices in the industry have the skills and knowledge to ensure our food products, which millions of people consume every day, are safe.

Advanced Operators work in the manufacturing sector of the food and drink industry. They typically work on production lines in manufacturing plants, but will spend some time offline while working on activities such as new product development. They have both knowledge and skills in preventative maintenance activities and Continuous Improvement (CI) techniques, which are essential to maintaining and improving productivity in food and drink manufacturing sites.
Whichever part of the industry they choose to work in, on completion of this programme, the individual will be able to evaluate and make improvements to safety, quality and performance in a food and drink manufacturing environment.

Advanced Operators will develop an in-depth knowledge of food and drink products, health and safety systems, quality systems and Good Manufacturing Processes (GMP). They are trained to interrogate and interpret data to identify trends and carry out basic fault finding. This will help to avoid future faults and improve quality and productivity. Advanced Operators may be expected to lead others; as such they will develop skills in leadership and management.

In order to carry out an apprenticeship you must be in a real work environment, carrying out duties provided by your employer which will support your develop you in Food production. The apprenticeship will last between 18-24 months depending on your opportunities to provide evidence and undertake end point assessment.

During a college interview, your Assessor will discuss how best you can obtain a position. There may be organisations that the college is working with who are looking for an apprentice that you could apply for a position with or you may prefer to approach an organisation of your choice.

This qualification is gained in the workplace through on the job training, by proving competence to Industry Standards. Topics may include:

  • Principles of food safety and HACCP supervision for advanced food operators
  • Principles of food science and technology
  • Principles of manufacturing practice for advanced food and drink operators
  • Understand how to improve food and drink operations
  • Understand how to introduce and maintain equipment and processes in food & drink operations
  • Understand how to manage health, safety and environmental systems in food & drink operations
  • Contribute to audits in food and drink operations
  • Lead and develop teams in food and drink operations
  • Manage food and drink operations
  • Implement and manage quality control systems and quality control in food and drink operations
  • Improve food and drink operations using continuous improvement and problem- solving techniques
  • Improve food and drink quality using continuous improvement and problem-solving techniques

Apprentices are required to complete a Level 2 Diploma in Food and Drink Operations qualification prior to taking the end-point assessment for the apprenticeship. The End Point Assessment includes:

  • Multiple Choice Questions
  • Observational exam in the workplace
  • Business presentation

Assessment Methods

The Apprenticeship is assessed in the workplace by a competent Assessor who has specific sector knowledge. A portfolio will be built using various assessment methods.  Only once all elements of the Apprenticeship have been completed will you be eligible for end point assessment.

Functional Skills (English and maths) will be achieved by studying the content of the syllabus and passing on-line exams (if required).

Progression Options

On completion of this programme, individuals may progress into more advanced technical or leadership roles. This apprenticeship is an ideal spring board for potential future leaders of the food and drink industry.

Course Summary

Course Title Food and Drink Advanced Technical Operator Apprenticeship Level 3
Entry Requirements

Employers will set their own criteria, but typically an entrant to this
apprenticeship will
already have achieved a minimum of Level 1 in English and

You are required to complete an initial English and Maths assessment
(Century) to a minimum of level 1 standard

Start Date
Start Time  
End Time  
Remaining Places  


I really enjoy studying here. My lessons have a friendly atmosphere and the tutors push me to be the best I can be. Studying here has allowed me to gain the qualifications I need to go on to a degree!

Myles Fisher

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