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Occupational Profile

Meat Cutter

Meat cutters prepare standard cuts of meat, poultry and fish or products such as sausage in processing plants or retail food establishments.

Also Known As

Butcher

Employment and Advancement

Above-average occupational growth is expected in Alberta for 2016 to 2020. Job openings are a result of employment turnover and newly created positions.

Meat cutters may be employed in meat processing plants or retail businesses such as supermarkets, specialty sausage and delicatessen stores, and independent meat markets. In processing plants, meat cutters usually start on an assembly line. Retail trainees usually start with routine work such as removing bones and gradually learn more complex skills such as rolling and tying roasts.

Experienced meat cutters may advance to supervisory positions such as meat department manager in a supermarket or team co-ordinator in a meat processing plant. Some meat cutters open their own meat markets or move into related positions in sales, inspection or quality assurance.

In Alberta, meat cutters are part of two larger 2011 National Occupational Classifications, 6331: Butchers, meat cutters and fishmongers - retail and wholesale and National Occupational Classification 9462: Industrial butchers and meat cutters, poultry preparers and related workers.

84% of people employed in the Butchers, meat cutters and fishmongers - retail and wholesale group work in the Retail Trade industry.

93% of the people who work in the Butchers and meat cutters, poultry preparers and related workers group work in  Manufacturing.

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 industries listed above)
  • 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.

Over 4,800 Albertans are employed in the Butchers, meat cutters and fishmongers - retail and wholesale occupational group. This group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 2.0% from 2016 to 2020. As a result, 96 new positions are forecast to be created each year, in addition to job openings created by employment turnover. Note: As meat cutters form only a part of this larger occupational group, only some of these newly created positions will be for meat cutters.

Over 3,800 Albertans are employed in the Industrial butchers and meat cutters, poultry preparers and related workers occupational group. This group is expected to have a below-average annual growth of 1.5% from 2016 to 2020. As a result, 57 new positions are forecast to be created each year, in addition to job openings created by employment turnover. Note: As meat cutters form only a part of this larger occupational group, only some of these newly created positions will be for meat cutters.

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

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.

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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