CATERERS prepare and serve food and refreshments for events such as luncheons, showers, wedding receptions, charity balls, holiday dinners and various other gatherings. Caterers usually provide dishes, serving utensils, linens, and other related items. They help clients in every aspect of planning an event. They may plan the event time and place, set limits on guest lists, plan menu details, and stay within a budget. Most caterers run their own catering business and are responsible for day-to-day operations. Caterers price items, use food and other supplies efficiently, maintain financial records, prepare payroll, and process paperwork.
Salary, Size & Growth
- $49,500 average per year ($23.75 per hour)
- A large occupation (773,400 workers in 2010)
- Expected to grow moderately (0.7% per year)
Many CATERERS have a college degree in business administration or home economics with a major in foods or nutrition. Some caterers attend culinary schools that provide food preparation training. Managers of catering services in hotels usually have a bachelor's degree or master's degree. Most states require caterers to be certified for sanitary cooking conditions and safe equipment. Kitchens must meet certain health standards and pass periodic inspections by health officials. Contact the local board of health in your area for more information. Most offer two- to three-day courses in health laws for prospective caterers.