WASHINGTON — Entry-level frontline workers in the commercial baking industry have opportunities to grow into leadership positions within their companies, according to a baking industry’s frontline workforce landscape study released Oct. 21 by the American Bakers Association.

In 2019, at least one in every four frontline supervisors or managers were promoted from within at 66% of the companies in the study. The percentage was 78% for companies with career paths.

In 2019, 39% of the companies spent $1,000 or more per worker on training. While 76% of the companies had programs designed to recognize and reward workers for achievements, more than 80% of the companies involved frontline workers in safety programs and best practice management. More than 3,000 veterans were employed in baking industry frontline careers in 2019.

“Our industry’s most important ingredient is the skilled workforce that consistently provides safe, nutritious, and delicious baked goods to America’s families,” said Robb MacKie, president and chief executive officer of the ABA. “This timely study gives an in-depth look at opportunities to promote and grow this community of 800,000 essential workers.”

The study also showed how bakeries gave back to their communities. Companies donated more than 26 million lbs of food and gave nearly $7 million to charities and local organizations in 2019 while volunteers from the baking industry logged nearly 31,000 hours. In 2019, 70% of companies donated food while 75% donated money and 67% volunteered.

Forty-three ABA member facilities were recognized as 2019 Energy Star certified manufacturing plants. Facilities earn the certification by saving energy, saving money and generating fewer greenhouse gas emissions than typical buildings.

The ABA and ndp | analytics, a strategic research firm that specializes in economic analysis of public policy and legal issues, jointly produced the study as a resource for ABA members.