Primary Products Inspector


Primary products inspectors examine animals, plants and agricultural produce at farms, abattoirs, processing and packing plants, wholesale markets and places of storage or shipment to ensure they meet government standards of hygiene and quality, and export requirements.

Duties & Tasks

Primary products inspectors may perform the following tasks:

  • check produce, live animals and crops for disease, insect or chemical residue and other damage, and reject those of substandard quality
  • check and grade produce (such as meat, fruit, vegetables, milk, grains, sugar cane and fish) during processing, ensuring ingredients used in processing meet government standards of purity and grading
  • supervise fumigation of ships and aircraft
  • supervise the proper disposal of quarantine garbage
  • examine imported plants, animals and products (timber, seeds and dried fruits, for example) and make quarantine arrangements
  • ensure commercial fishing regulations are obeyed
  • inspect livestock before and after slaughter to check that they are fit for human consumption
  • advise on packing and loading regulations
  • advise primary producers on economic aspects of disease eradication, and inform producers and the general public of health implications of diseases and impurities
  • appear in court to give evidence in cases involving breaches of the regulations.


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An Australian quarantine inspection service officer prevents pests and diseases from entering the country by examining and treating all incoming and outgoing animals, plants, food, humans and machinery. Quarantine inspectors may work at international airports, seaports, mail exchanges and container depots.

Meat Inspector

A meat inspector inspects carcasses and internal organs of animals for disease and ensures the meat complies with health requirements.

Sugarcane Analyst/Auditor

A sugarcane analyst/auditor oversees the entire operations of sugarcane analysis programmes to ensure they comply with programme provisions.

Working Conditions

Primary products inspectors may be required to work shifts, including weekends.

Personal Requirements

  • normal colour vision
  • confidence when dealing with people
  • good communication skills
  • able to make accurate observations
  • good organisational and supervisory skills
  • able to handle animals with confidence and patience
  • aptitude for working with computers.
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