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Food manufacturing inspector

Alternative titles for this job include Food quality control inspector, food safety officer

Food manufacturing inspectors make sure companies meet hygiene and safety standards, and that products are safe to eat.

Average salary (a year)

£20,000 Starter


£35,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

40 to 42 a week

You could work

on call away from home

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Food manufacturing inspector

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role


You could do a college course to get some of the skills and knowledge you need for this job.

Courses include:

  • Level 3 Diploma in Food and Drink Operations
  • T Level in Science

Once working, you would complete further training to become an inspector.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths for a T Level

More Information


You can work towards this job by doing an advanced apprenticeship for:

  • food technologists
  • food and drink process operators

You would complete further training in food quality and inspection after your apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More Information


If you're working in the food and drinks industry, you can take training for a:

  • Higher Certificate in Food Control
  • Advanced Professional Certificate in Food Hygiene and Standards Control

You will also complete a portfolio of work for assessment as part of the training. These qualifications are awarded through the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

More Information

Further information

You can find out more about careers and training in food safety from the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • the ability to analyse quality or performance
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work well with others
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • knowledge of public safety and security
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • legal knowledge including court procedures and government regulations
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

Restrictions and Requirements

You'll usually need a driving licence to travel between sites.

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

In this job, you will:

  • inspect conditions in slaughterhouses and processing plants
  • carry out quality control checks
  • test samples of raw ingredients and processed products
  • analyse and present test results
  • make sure production processes meet hygiene regulations
  • train production staff in the importance of safety standards
  • check labelling and packaging
  • write quality reports
  • advise companies about making improvements, and issue warning notices

Working environment

You could work at a manufacturing plant or in an office.

Your working environment may be noisy and you'll travel often.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience you could become a food safety manager, co-ordinating the work of a team of inspectors.

You could also move into environmental health or food science after training.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Operations Apprentice

  • Wage: £20,000 a year Annually
  • Location: Blackworthy Road, Castle Cary

Courses In England

Food Safety in Catering

  • Start date: 23 July 2024
  • Location: Bracknell

Food Safety

  • Start date: 08 November 2024
  • Location: Shipley

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