Tammy Barrett - Manager - Research and Development

Tammy Barrett

Manager - Research and Development at Chapman’s Ice Cream

I was born/grew up in: Born in Grey County, ON Canada

I now live in: Currently live in Grey County, ON Canada

I completed my training/education at:

Graduated from the University of Guelph with a BSc (Env.) – Honours

Completed a Food Science Certificate Program – University of Guelph

Describe what you do at work.

My work day often involves creating recipes for new products. And while you might not think so, I use a lot of math. In our department we work as a team to supply sensory feedback on each other’s projects. This includes how it looks, tastes, feels in the mouth, etc. In addition to being creative and developing different flavours of ice cream, we need to understand the Canadian Food Regulations. These regulations tell us what can be used in our products. We also need to understand the chemical and physical makeup of the ingredients we use, as they may affect the product. We use specialized ice cream freezers to make our concepts into finished goods. This equipment must run at certain settings to achieve the overall sensory profile of the product we are developing. For example, if it is too warm or too cold the ice cream produced might be too soft or too hard or not feel right in your mouth.

How does your job affect people’s lives?

Everyone loves Ice Cream! I enjoy being able to produce a product that may become a family favourite. Getting feedback from our consumers on how much they love a product we developed makes it all worthwhile.

What motivates you in your career?

At work if you can come up with a creative flavour that is appealing to many groups it can be very exciting. Being able to work with many types of ingredients and flavours is fun and allows our R and D team to “think outside the box”. It also lets us think back to when we were kids and what we enjoyed as a child.

Describe your career path to this career.

I didn’t know what I wanted to do in high school. It wasn’t until I graduated University with a Science degree that I became more interested in the Food Science field. Although I graduated with an Environmental Science degree, I was still able to apply the science skills and processes from my degree to the science parts of my career.

What activities do you like to do outside of work?

My hobbies are hiking, camping and gardening.

I’m a member of Toastmasters which is a club formed to help people improve themselves in public speaking, presentations and leadership qualities.

What advice or encouragement would you give others seeking a similar career?

It is best to get a Science degree, especially in Food Science. Also a diploma from Colleges in the Food Technology area is an asset as well.

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