Engineer’s salaries are similar to other skilled industries but we have lots of opportunities to progress in many different aspects of engineering.
A lot of senior managers and factory managers who I know and work with started out as engineers and they have all used engineering as a platform to progress further in their careers.
Specifically around food engineering there are lots of companies who invest a lot of money in upgrading processes and equipment to make their manufacturing sites more efficient and cost effective. To do this they need food engineers to ensure that the money is invested in the right areas and equipment to provide the paybacks required
I understand this question as “where can I go in food engineering?”.
The food industry is a pretty wide one and ranges through snacks, ready meals, agriculture and drinks. So there’s lots of room for working on something new. This is considered a sideways move.
As Dean said, a lot of the more senior people here started off at the bottom. gained technical skills and knowledge through work and have used this to progress their careers. This is more of an upwards move.
Or, as the engineering principles as are similar in a lot of industries, it’s not uncommon for someone to start a brand new career and move to something like oil or energy. This is more like jumping off a boat, but if it’s what makes you happy and passionate it can pay off!