A Meat Inspector ensures that meat is safe from contamination and that the process it goes though follows quality assurance regulations. They inspect all meat products including, poultry, seafood, beef, pork, etc. before the intial packaging.
What responsibilities will I have?
- Inspect and grade various types and cuts of meat
- Inspect live animals, game or poultry for any signs of disease
- Making sure that unfit meat is destroyed properly
- Conduct post mortem examinations on diseased animals
- Examine samples for bacterial or non-desirable excess material
- Prepare reports from test results
- Observe employees and daily procedures to assure standards are met
- Send animal tissue to lab for testing
- Perform quality control analysis including tests and inspections of products and processes
- Serve as the on-site liaison with regulatory officials, safety inspectors, compliance auditors, and other external personnel
- Manage and perform daily pre-operational, operational, and mid-shift clean maintenance inspections and tours by utilizing visual cues and observations and microbiological analysis
- Assure and ensure strict adherence and compliance to Good Manufacturing practices (GMPs), Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), and Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (SSOPs)
- Manage Vendor certification program
- Direct and perform shelf life and other inventory-related studies for product quality and safety; material freshness, aging, molding, and preservation
- Manage labeling and nutritional labeling requirements, in accordance with U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and USDA (Dept. of Agriculture) regulations and standards
What education and training is required?
A bachelor’s degree in Food Science, Microbiology, or Meat Science required.
To pursue a career as a Meat Inspector :
The following high school courses are recommended:agricultural education, a focus on sciences such as animal science and biology, chemistry, physical science, and mathematics.
Employed by food or meat processing companies, state and federal government agencies.
Future Job Market/Outlook:
The future outlook for Meat Inspectors is fair.
Suggested Professional Organizations and Associations:
- National Meat Association
- Association of Meat Inspectors
- American Association of Meat Processors