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Feed Mill Production Worker

Feed mill production workers operate machines that clean, separate, crush, grind, mix, pellet and bag grains for animal and poultry feed.

  • Avg. Salary $41,759.00
  • Avg. Wage $20.56
  • Minimum Education Varies
  • Outlook above avg
  • Employed 4,000
  • In Demand Medium
Also Known As

Production Worker

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Machine Operators, Food and Beverage Processing (9461.2) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Process Control and Machine Operators, Food and Beverage Processing (J171) 
  • 2011 NOC: Process control and machine operators, food, beverage and associated products processing (9461) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

Average Wage
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 20 kg
Interest Codes
The Feed Mill Production Worker is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Machine Operators, Food and Beverage Processing

Interest in operating processing and packaging machines and equipment


Interest in comparing information to make sure products conform to company standards; and in recording production data such as quantities, weights, sizes, dates and types of packaged products


Interest in setting up and adjusting processing and packaging machines

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Updated Dec 16, 2016

Feed mill production workers may specialize in one area of the operation or they may rotate duties throughout the plant. In general, they:

  • operate pellet mills, rolling and grinding equipment, mixing and blending equipment or packaging equipment
  • conduct quality control checks
  • maintain records of production information
  • maintain and repair equipment
  • handle bagged products and sales inventory in the warehouse
  • manually scale and prepare minerals, vitamins and medications
  • operate forklifts
  • load and drive trucks.

The industry is changing and production workers are being assigned more responsibility in ensuring that proper production processes are used. Many plants are being automated. In most plants, workers interact with other staff members in all parts of the operation.

Working Conditions
Updated Dec 16, 2016

Feed mill production workers primarily work indoors in an environment that may be noisy and dusty. Shift work usually is required.

Lifting over 20 kilograms may be required.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 20 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Dec 16, 2016

Feed mill production workers need the following characteristics:

  • good health and stamina (no allergies to grain dust)
  • a high degree of manual dexterity
  • the ability to understand and follow oral and written instructions
  • the ability to work quickly and steadily, and work with little supervision
  • mechanical ability
  • the ability to work as part of a team.

Feed mill production workers should enjoy operating and controlling equipment, having clear rules and organized methods for their work, and adjusting machines.

Educational Requirements
Updated Dec 16, 2016

There are no standard education requirements for feed mill production workers. However, employers may require job applicants to have a high school diploma. Related training or experience (for example, a farm background) and computer skills are definite assets.

Feed mill production workers generally are trained on the job to operate machinery in various aspects of mill operations. This may involve:

  • learning and following standard operating procedures for good manufacturing practices
  • maintaining records for Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) certification
  • learning and following health and safety procedures
  • obtaining a forklift certificate.

When there is sufficient demand for them, related short courses are offered by the continuing education divisions of post-secondary schools that offer agricultural programs.

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Dec 16, 2016

Certification is not required, as there is currently no legislation regulating this occupation.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Dec 16, 2016

Employees who have no previous experience in feed mill production usually start as general plant help. After obtaining experience around the mill, they are trained to operate machinery.

In most plants, individuals who have demonstrated leadership abilities may advance to lead hand and supervisory positions. Some production workers may become feed sales representatives or move into marketing positions (if they take additional training and have a suitable personality).

Feed mill production workers are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 9461: Process control and machine operators, food and beverage processing. In Alberta, 84% of people employed in this classification work in the Manufacturing (PDF) industry.

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the Manufacturing industry)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

In Alberta, the J171: Process Control and Machine Operators, Food and Beverage Processing occupational group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 1.8% from 2016 to 2020. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 59 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Dec 16, 2016

Process control and machine operators, food, beverage and associated products processing

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $12.20 $26.00 $18.06 $17.00
Overall $14.00 $32.00 $20.56 $20.25
Top $14.00 $37.00 $25.17 $25.00

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.

Industry Information
Wholesale Trade

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years


Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties


Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months


Vacancy Rate

Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Trades, Industrial and Related Training
Other Sources of Information
Updated Dec 16, 2016

Animal Nutrition Association of Canada (ANAC) website:

For more information on career planning, education and jobs call the Alberta Supports Contact Centre toll-free at 1-877-644-9992 or 780-644-9992 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Supports Centre near you.

Updated Mar 30, 2015. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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