Inspector of Agricultural Product  What They Do

Just the Facts


Inspects agricultural commodities, processing equipment, and facilities, and fish and logging operations, to ensure compliance with regulations and laws governing health, quality, and safety.

This career is part of the Government and Public Administration cluster Regulation pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Inspects food products and processing procedures to determine whether products are safe to eat.
  • Interprets and enforces government acts and regulations and explains required standards to agricultural workers.
  • Sets standards for the production of meat or poultry products or for food ingredients, additives, or compounds used to prepare or package products.
  • Inspects agricultural commodities or related operations, as well as fish or logging operations, for compliance with laws and regulations governing health, quality, and safety.
  • Labels and seals graded products and issues official grading certificates.
  • Monitors the operations and sanitary conditions of slaughtering or meat processing plants.
  • Takes emergency actions, such as closing production facilities, if product safety is compromised.
  • Verifies that transportation and handling procedures meet regulatory requirements.
  • Inspects the cleanliness and practices of establishment employees.
  • Examines, weighs, and measures commodities, such as poultry, eggs, meat, or seafood to certify qualities, grades, and weights.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves bending or twisting your body more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Conditions are very hot (above 90 F) or very cold (under 32 F)
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation requires being outside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Picking out a particular sound in the presence of other sounds
  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Irregular hours
  • Overnight travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Apiary Inspector -- Inspects bee-keeping operations.
  • Cattle Inspector --
  • Dairy Inspector --
  • Eggs Inspector --
  • Food Safety Inspector --
  • Plant Pest Inspector --