The goal of this blog is to suggest some new ways to look at potential job opportunities in the food industry. There may be jobs you never thought of, let alone imagined. I hope to encourage you to use your own unique life experiences and the things you most enjoy doing to seeking a culinary path that will be fulfilling and rewarding. And, from time to time, I will slip in my own musings on and about the food world.
A Few Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Your name is unique. What is the correct pronunciation and what are the funniest pronunciations you’ve heard?
A: My name is Irena and is best pronounced EE’rain’ah. But you’d be amazed to know that others will call me Irene (Eye’reen!) or Irina (Eye’reen’ah?) or Ilona Chombers. As long as the person asks me nicely, I’m happy to respond with a smile.
Q: How did the FOOD JOBS Blog come about?
A: The FOOD JOBS Blog is both a natural expansion of food jobs covered in FOOD JOBS: 150 Great JOBS for Culinary Students, Career Changers and FOOD Lovers and GREAT FOOD JOBS 2: Ideas and Inspiration for Your Job Hunt. It is also a place to share my passion for the food industry: my thoughts, musings and dashes of humor on food issues and topics of the day that may make you laugh and possibly inspire you to join in the food world with its many colors, tastes, sounds, smells and flavors.
A: I actually began my circuitous food journey at the Lexington Market in Baltimore. It was the home of the DelMarVA (Delaware, Maryland and Virginia) Chicken Festival. The festival’s promoters hired a woman, sight unseen, to demonstrate the prize-winning fried chicken recipe. When she arrived there was no mistaking that she was absolutely gorgeous. The organizers were shocked. “Oh dear, this won’t do at all,” they declared. “What we need is an ordinary Mom.” That’s how I got the job. To this day, I adore fried chicken.
Q: What are three pieces of advice you’d offer anyone about to embark on a culinary career or career change into the food world?
A: First: do your homework. Making a life-altering decision is incredibly hard work (or should be)! Otherwise, if you leave this decision to the last minute, you’ll have to grab anything that’s offered because you need the money.
Second: be realistic. If you’re thinking of opening a bed & breakfast or coffee bar, for example, learn the business thoroughly before setting out on your own.
Third involves the overused word: passion. Every successful person cares passionately about what they do.
Q: Is there an easy to keep up to date with the latest from the Food Jobs Blog:
A: Yes: You can follow me on Facebook (Irena Chalmers), at Twitter, (@foodjobsbook) and by subscribing to RSS feed:
What is an RSS feed?
It is a magical tool that lets you read the content of blogs and news sites in a single place called a feed reader. Instead of logging on to each website individually to see what’s new, you subscribe to the feed once — it’s free. The feed reader can also alert you every time there’s a new post. This process is also referred to as “syndication”: you syndicate your favorite blogs.