Seafood Inspector Jobs
A discussion on aquaculture and fish farming would not be complete without the inclusion of food safety.
Therefore, the role of food inspector is extremely important when considering most fish farmers wish to sell their products to processing companies or restaurants to be used as food for humans. Jobs in this category generally fall within state, provincial or federal jurisdiction.
A food inspector is usually responsible for verifying the operations and end products leaving an aquatic species farm are acceptable for human consumption. The inspector not only checks to see aquatic species meet certain guidelines and regulations in terms of biological quality, but helps educate fish farming personnel in understanding the regulations or required safety precautions. Many businesses require a positive result on a food inspector report to obtain the necessary permits required to stay in operation. The inspector will tour a facility, taking an in-depth look at procedures, species health and working conditions to determine if the site is in compliance with local, national or international policies and regulations. The storage of fish to be processed or after processing is an often overlooked aspect of aquaculture which the inspector is intimately involved with. The inspector must ensure aquatic species meant for human consumption do not spoil or acquire harmful biological organisms while in transit or storage.
The food inspector generally requires a bachelor’s degree in biology or a natural resource-related field from an accredited institution. In addition, most positions require an individual with experience in the aquaculture or fisheries in general. Experience in biology and general medicine is valuable as well because most inspectors need a basic understanding of drugs and pesticides in aquatic species and the feed they consume.
The expected annual salary should be between US$50,000 and $60,000 based on experience and amount of responsibility required.
The food inspector must be able to perform inspections per local, national or international standards. Experience or a basic understanding in law is extremely helpful in deciphering new laws, policies or regulations as they are issued in order to communicate their stipulations to fish farmers and other aquaculture operations. Some inspectors may also require basic management skills, as they may serve as a supervisor to a team of inspectors or biologists. An inspector must have good people skills as collaborating with individuals both from fish farming operations and within other food safety agencies to maintain food quality is essential.