Moving from the city to the country is not something you hear about often from your average mid-20-year-old millennial. Cole Ellis, 25, felt he needed a shift in his career when he decided to take on his new job as Junior Cheese Maker at Monforte Dairy, in Stratford, Ont.
Cole grew up in Ottawa and majored in Kinesiology and Business in university. He decided to pursue business when he graduated and took on various jobs in technology, starting out and gaining work experience within start-up companies.
“I always liked working for small companies,” says Ellis. “You have the opportunity to wear different hats so you can get experience working in every different aspect of the company and whatever you’re interested in you can bring that to the organization as well and try to incorporate that into what they do.”
His last position as a sales representative at an Ottawa based-company called Publivate brought him to Toronto, where he would try to land big clients as the company was growing and expanding.
In our age of advanced technology, working from home in the comfort zone describes the life of what many young professionals nowadays. But for Ellis, this type of job didn’t give him satisfaction for a long-term career.
“I had to spend a lot of time of making myself busy, which isn’t great- I found it difficult to stay motivated from working at home.”
While working for Publivate, he developed an idea to start his own beef jerky company. He was told that if ever he wanted to make it in the food industry, the best way to start would be to work in the field.
“After one frustrating day at Publivate, I went online and looked for jobs in the food production industry.”
He ended up getting the job as Junior Cheese Maker at Monforte Dairy and decided it was time to move to Stratford.
“Learning a new skill set is probably what I’m most excited about,” says Ellis. “Working with your hands, actually producing a physical high quality products and working with a close-knit group of people and all working towards this one passion they have together is something I look forward to as well.”
He hopes to pursue the business aspects he learned in his previous jobs with technology with a physical and tangible product.
Even though Cole will be earning 20 per cent less than what he was earning at his previous job as a sales rep, he feels that he will able to pursue and explore more of his creativity through this job, and be more passionate about it.
Cole may not be the only one moving away from the popular technological career path and going back to basics. According to a study featured in Maclean’s, the nature of the work force is changing across Canada. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has estimated that there will be 550,00 unskilled workers who won’t be able to find work by 2016. Sorensen argues that there should be a greater focus on colleges and polytechnic universities, which would allow for students to acquire more skilled-labor techniques. He adds that “others says the country needs to do a better job of informing young people about the breadth of high-paying career opportunities in a modern economy.”
The job opportunity and opening at Monforte Dairy shows an increasing growth in local food production industry, specifically the sustainable and organic food movement that has become increasingly popular in the last few years.
According to a 2013 report by the Canada Organic Trade Association, the organic food industry now represents $3.7 billion a year in sales in Canada, tripling since 2006.
More and more Canadians are buying organic for various reasons. Health and environmental awareness are major players in this growing movement.
2) Description for Video Component
For my video component, I will follow Cole Ellis on a typical day at his new job at Monforte Dairy. I would like to get shots of him making cheese and follow him on a day at the Dairy. I want to film his impressions, of his new job and how it differs from his previous job. Is this what he expected? Is he happy and satisfied? Is he passionate about it?
I would like to talk to the owners of Monforte dairy and other employees about the business, their business ethic and philosophy. I would also like to talk more about the organic food movement and its rise in recent years.
3) I took into an account the critique and make the corrections when I have more information for my final piece.