According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the food and beverage industry employs approximately 8,000,000 people, nationally, in full-service dining and limited-service settings. This number has an expected increase of 12% before the year 2020, bumping it up to almost 9,000,000.
New York State boasts about 10% of food and beverage workers in the country, most of them employed in one of New York City's 4,500 restaurants and cafes.
A quick search of the industries top job posting sites reinforce the nature of opportunity in food, especially in New York City:
Craigslist.com shows about 800 job listings in Food, Beverage and Hospitality just within the last 30 days (and only showing those with photos attached!). P ositions range from jobs at 4-star culinary diamonds, like Per Se, to endless opportunities at Colorado-born, burrito chain Chipotle.
GoodFoodJobs.com, Craiglist's more polished and curated younger sister, features about 230 job listings over the last 2 months. Here you can find more specialized listings like bread baking for Brooklyn gastro-celeb Andrew Tarlow and full-time front of house positions for avant-garde chef Wylie Dufresne's forthcoming restaurant.
Ironically, the food and beverage industry suffers from a staggering unemployment rate. At 10.1%, it is 2.5% above the national average, ranking it almost exactly on par with the national rate of unemployment in France, the mother of the modern restaurant and cafe.