Divide, mould and shape fermented dough in bakery operations

Business Sectors (Suites): Craft Bakery
Developed by: Improve
Approved on: 30 Mar 2023


This standard covers the skills and knowledge needed to divide, mould and shape fermented dough by hand, in craft, artisan or in-store bakery operations. Fermented dough typically includes that for bread, rolls sticks, enriched, sour and laminated dough and dough for free-from products.

You need to show and understand how you hand divide dough using a knife and scales, and a manually operated dough portioning device. You will need to demonstrate hand moulding skills, and the shaping of dough by hand and using a rolling pin. You need to know how to recognise and prevent contamination during processing. You need to understand the role of yeast and the principles of the fermentation process in dough. You need to know the basic structure of dough and how processing affects gas production and retention rates. You also need to know, how the control of fermentation during processing determines product quality. Complying with and understanding health and safety, food safety, allergen and organisational requirements are essential features of this standard.

This standard is for you if you work in bakery operations, and is applied in the context of fermented dough production.

Performance criteria

You must be able to:

1. check the dough amount against recipe, yield and production figures, take prompt action on discovering any discrepancy 
2. obtain and check the condition of dividing tools and the accuracy of equipment in accordance with procedures 
3. hand divide dough in accordance with product specifications and yield requirements 
4. minimise waste and deal with scrap material in accordance with procedures 
5. position and maintain divided dough portions for further processing 
6. comply with health, safety, food safety, allergen and organisational requirements throughout dividing 
7. check the available portioned dough against your instructions and specifications and take prompt action on discovering a discrepancy
8. prepare and maintain an appropriate table surface for moulding and shaping
9. hand mould and shape portioned dough in accordance with product specifications
10. wash and dress shaped dough surfaces as required to specification
11. minimise waste and deal with scrap material in accordance with procedures
12. place dough in the correct condition and location for further processing
13. comply with health, safety, food safety, allergen and organisational requirements throughout moulding and shaping operations
14. carry out cleaning, in accordance with Food Safety requirements and procedures
15. operate within the limits of your own authority and capabilities

Knowledge and Understanding

You need to know and understand:

1. the standards of health and safety and food safety you are required to comply with, why it is important that you do so, and what might happen if standards are not met
2. why it is important to follow work instructions and product specifications or recipes throughout dough processing
3. how to recognise and report dough that do not meet specification, and the procedure for rejecting and isolating failed dough and dough portions
4. the importance of accurate dividing and check weighing of fermented dough
5. how to seek advice and make process adjustments to dough, to take into account minor changes in ingredient performance, production timing and environmental conditions, necessary to keep a dough within specification
6. how to prevent dough contamination and cross contamination during processing and what might happen if this is not done
7. what the lines and methods of effective communication are and why it is important to use them correctly
8. what the documentation requirements are and why it is important to meet them
9. personal protective clothing/equipment and working practices which are useful in combating the potentially harmful effects of dust and allergies resulting from breathing or skin contact with ingredients or dough
10. the cell structure and properties of yeast as a living organism, the feeding, growth and multiplication of yeast cells
11. the principles of fermentation in dough; the role and action of enzymes, carbon dioxide gas and alcohol production
12. the factors affecting fermentation rate, temperature, sugar, salt, fats and spices 

13. what happens if dough fermentation is allowed to progress without processing controls
14. how the rate of dough fermentation is controlled in dough by temperature and humidity controlled processing environments
15. the structure of dough, its capacity to form gas cells and trap gas bubbles and changes that occur during moulding, shaping and resting that are critical to successful dough fermentation and development
16. the function of key ingredients in dough making which can influence dough fermentation rates
17. the gas production and retention properties of long process dough processing methods; bulk fermentation process (BFP), sponge and dough process
18. the gas production and retention properties of short process dough processing methods; mechanical dough development in the Chorleywood Bread Process (CBP), activated dough development (ADD), no-time dough process
19. how to maintain dough condition and deal with fermentation time constraints
20. how to recognise dough fermentation problems which do not comply with specification


Scope Performance

Scope Knowledge





Links To Other NOS

External Links

Version Number


Indicative Review Date

30 Mar 2028





Originating Organisation


Original URN


Relevant Occupations

Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies, Food Production Operatives, Manufacturing Technologies, Process Operatives

SOC Code



Divide; Mould; Shape; Dough; Fermentation; Bakery; Baker;