Mask and cover celebration cakes 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 mask and cover celebration cakes typically in craft or artisan bakery operations.  Celebration cakes may include cakes designed for birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, Christmas and other special occasions like Mother’s Day or Easter.

You need to show and understand how you mask cake bases with suitable glazes in readiness for covering. You will need to demonstrate that you can cover masked bases to the required standards as set out in a product specification, with coverings like royal icing, sugar paste or soft coatings. You need to know how to recognise and prevent contamination during masking and covering operations. Complying with and understanding health and safety, food safety 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 cake decoration operations.

Performance criteria

You must be able to:

1. identify and check the condition of bases in accordance with specifications                              

2. identify and select tools and equipment for masking in accordance with specifications
3. position bases for masking in accordance with procedures
4. identify and adjust the condition of masking materials in accordance with specifications
5. mask bases and place for the next stage in cake decoration in accordance with procedures
6. take prompt action to isolate substandard bases in accordance with procedures
7. comply with health, safety, food safety, allergen and organisational requirements throughout masking operations
8. identify and check the condition of masked bases in accordance with specifications
9. identify and select tools and equipment for covering in accordance with specifications
10. position masked bases for covering in accordance with procedures
11. identify and adjust the condition of covering materials in accordance with specifications
12. cover masked bases in accordance with specifications
13. place and arrange for covered bases to receive the specified drying time
14. take prompt action to isolate substandard bases in accordance with procedures
15. comply with health, safety, food safety, allergen and organisational requirements throughout covering operations
16. carry out cleaning and maintenance of equipment in accordance with Food Safety requirements and procedures. 
17. 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. how to source and read work instructions and specifications to check and monitor processing requirements
3. why it is important to follow work instructions and product specifications or recipes throughout processing to ensure successful products
4. how to recognise and report products that do not meet specification, and the procedure for rejecting and isolating failed products
5. how to prevent contamination and cross contamination during processing and what might happen if this is not done
6. what the lines and methods of effective communication during processing are and why it is important to use them correctly
7. what the documentation requirements during processing are and why it is important to meet them
8. the correct method for loading and unloading trays in racks
9. how to maintain and adjust consistency of confectionery masking and covering materials
10. how to handle bases, mask and cover cakes efficiently without causing damage
11. how to recognise masking and covering materials which do not conform to specification

12. corrective actions for dealing with materials which are out of 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



Masking; Covering; Celebration; Cakes; Confectionery; Craft; Bakery; Baker;