Marine Corps Food Service Specialist MOS 3381

Food Service Specialists Keep Marines Fed and Healthy

Military kitchen
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If you're interested in a job as a food service specialist in the Marines, rest assured you'll be doing more than peeling potatoes. This is an important job in the armed services: Marines (and soldiers, sailors and airmen) won't get very far without being properly fed. 

Food service specialists, which are military occupational specialty (MOS) 3381, are involved in every aspect of food preparation, procurement, storage and distribution, in both garrison and field environments.

Their duties extend to funding, requisitioning, purchasing, receiving, accounting and storing food supplies, and of course include cooking, baking and serving. 

Food Service Specialists Duties

Since they're likely to spend time in the field, an important part of the food service specialist job is quality control and assurance, making sure the food is kept in sanitary and safe condition. Like a sous chef at a restaurant or a line cook at a diner, the day-to-day responsibilities of this job include preparing fruits and vegetables, meat, fish and poultry as well as baked goods. While there's likely to be a potato or two in the mix, clearly this is a job for someone who knows their way around a kitchen. 

The food service specialists also keeps track of supply levels, making sure there is enough food on hand, and for conducting quality assurance evaluations. 

The most senior grades of food service specialists act as administrative assistants to the food service officer or food service operations officer.


Job Requirements for Food Service Specialists

To qualify for this job, a Marine needs a general technical (GT) score of 90 or higher on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test. They'll need to complete the basic food services course, or complete a minimum of six months of on-the-job training as a food service specialist.

All courses are taught at U.S. Army Quartermaster School in Fort Lee, Virginia. 

Food service specialists work closely with food service officers (MOS 3302), but have different responsibilities. Food service officers are tasked with overseeing the organization and planning end of the Marine Corps kitchen operations, which includes budgeting and coordinating the food service and subsistence program and all the logistics involved. If the food service specialist is the sous chef of the kitchen, then the food service officer is like the executive chef, who calls the shots and keeps the organization running smoothly

Anyone who aspires to the food service officer job must first serve as a food service specialist or as a Marine aide (MOS 3372). The job of Marine aide functions like a personal assistant to general and flag officers, helping with small tasks and other details. 

Duties: For a complete listing of duties and tasks, refer to MCO 1510.72, Individual Training Standards.

Related Department of Labor Occupation Codes 

Stock Clerk 222.387-058

Inventory Clerk 222.387-026

Chef 313.131-014.

Cook. Head, School Cafeteria 313.131-018.

Baker 313.381-010.

Related Marine Corps Jobs

Warehouse Clerk, 3051.

Supply Administration and operations Clerk, 3043.

Marine Aide, 3372.

Above information derived from MCBUL 1200, parts 2 and 3