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This Position Is No Longer Available

Job Title:  Food Inspector (Intermittent)
Department:  Department Of Agriculture
Agency:  Food Safety and Inspection Service
Job Announcement Number:  FI/INT-268593-09

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.
$15.00 to $24.16 / Per Hour
Monday, December 12, 2011 to Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Intermittent - Excepted Service Permanent
many vacancies - Location Negotiable After Selection, United States
United States Citizens


Our mission is to protect public health; by ensuring that the commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg products moving in interstate commerce or exported to other countries is safe, wholesome and correctly labeled and packaged.

• Do you want to make a difference in helping protect our nation’s food supply?
• Are you interested in improving public health?
• Does working in meat and poultry establishments interest you? 

The Open Period of this announcement has been updated (opening and closing dates have been changed).  If you have already applied to this announcement, you do not need to reapply at this time. 

As a Food Inspector you will be providing the first line of defense by ensuring that regulated meat*, poultry and egg product establishments produce safe products by executing appropriate inspection methods in public and privately owned meat or poultry slaughter and processing plants.  Food Inspectors ensure that the product is fit for human consumption in compliance with Federal laws governing the wholesomeness and purity of meat and poultry products.   
This position is appropriate for the new or mid-career professional seeking to start their career with the Food Safety and Inspection Service. The majority of our Inspectors are eventually promoted into positions that inspect processed meat and poultry products. This includes frozen dinners, canned goods, and cured and smoked products.  In processing plants, an Inspector reviews, verifies and monitors plant operations and records, and determines compliance with regulations. Many career paths are possible. 

You will be called upon to provide coverage for unstaffed in plant positions within a specified geographic area or plant.  Locations are available throughout the U.S.  Hours and shifts will vary, but you must be available for all shifts and able to report for duty within one hour after receiving a request (by phone) to report for work.  The number of hours you may work are limited to 1,280 hours in a service year.  This is not a permanent appointment and does NOT provide benefits. For the full time Food Inspector job announcement click on the following link Full-Time Food Inspector.

*The “Food Conservation and Energy Act of 2008”, also referred to as the “2008 Farm Bill”, was signed into Law on June 18, 2008.  The Farm Bill amends the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) to include Catfish as an amenable species under the Act.


  • U.S. Citizenship
  • Specialized experience or education (See Qualification/Evaluation)
  • Resume and supporting documents
  • Registered for Selective Service if applicable (See Benefits/Other)
  • Completion of the Occupational Questionnaire (See How to Apply)
  • Background Suitability Investigation required


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These positions are located in privately owned meat or poultry slaughter and processing plants.  Food Inspectors ensure that the product is fit for human consumption in compliance with Federal laws governing the wholesomeness and purity of meat and poultry products.  This is accomplished through ante-mortem inspection involving a visual examination of the live animal or poultry prior to slaughter, and post-mortem inspection to determine that the product is not contaminated and that sanitation procedures are maintained.  Processing Food Inspectors inspect processed meat and poultry products, and all other ingredients contained in the final product.  This includes frozen dinners, canned goods, and cured smoked products. 

To view examples of the types of work performed, please click on:


As a Federal official, you will be required to uphold the integrity of the regulatory process.  You will acquire the skills necessary to balance industry desired for productivity against public right to protection against unsafe or inferior food products.


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You can qualify based on either education OR experience, but not a combination of the two.

Qualifying at the GS-5 level based on EXPERIENCE:  You must have one year specialized experience that was obtained after your 16th birthday. The experience must show qualifying knowledge, judgment, interpretive ability, and technical skills. Your experience must be related to a finished product where there are specific standards. You must provide specific examples to show that you qualify. Specialized experience may include, but is not limited to, the following examples:

*Work experience processing food, in a slaughter or processing plant, or a comparable production activity which prepares food for human consumption. (Not all experience in a slaughter or processing plant is creditable.)
*Work experience as a meat cutter/butcher in a wholesale or retail meat/poultry business. The experience must include a full range of responsible duties to be qualifying.
*Work experience performing Quality Control tests and/or laboratory tests. This experience must be in the food industry or other similar environments, working with products that are consumed by humans or animals.
*Work experience as a manager or supervisor in the food or livestock industry. This experience in the food industry must demonstrate effective skills in communicating job requirements, evaluating results of work methods or processes, applying instructions, and interpreting standards or instructions.
*Work experience preparing food, as a chef or cook in a large-scale commercial establishment. This experience must demonstrate responsibility for proper food preparation, handling and sanitation practices. Fast food experience as a grill attendant, serving line attendant, or cashier does not demonstrate possession of these skills.
*Work experience as a Veterinary Technician. This experience must include conducting lab tests, assessing animals and/or partial examination of animals, performing necropsies, monitoring animals under anesthesia or other Vet Tech work involving standards and decisions.

Qualifying at the GS-7 level:  Applicants must have one year of full-time qualifying regulatory experience as a state, federal or military Food Inspector. Education cannot be substituted for experience to qualify at the GS-7 level.

Qualifying at the GS-5 level based on EDUCATION:  You may qualify at the GS-5 level based on successful completion of a full 4-year course of study leading to a bachelors degree from an accredited college or university, which included 12 semester hours in the biological, physical, mathematical, or agricultural sciences. If you are within 9 months of graduating you may apply.

Education cannot be substituted for experience to qualify at the GS-7 level.

The Office of Personnel Management Qualification Standard can be found at 

Medical Requirements:  The duties of a Food Inspector are performed in a hazardous working environment. Therefore, applicants must be physically and mentally able to efficiently perform the job functions, without hazard to themselves and others.Specifically, full range of motion is required for rapid repetitive twisting and working with arms above shoulder level as well as standing and walking on slippery and uneven floors and catwalks, and climbing stairs and ladders. Applicants must be able to lift, carry, push and pull up to 44 pounds. Manual dexterity of the upper body, including arms, hands, and fingers with a normal sense of touch in both hands are mandatory. In addition, applicants must be free of chronic eye disease, have good near and distance vision and have the ability to distinguish shades of color. Any significant degree of color blindness (25 percent or more error rate on approved color plate test) is disqualifying. The ability to hear and understand conversational voice is required. The above requirements are not all inclusive. This position requires a successful passing of a pre-employment physical.


We will review your résumé and college transcripts (if applicable) to ensure you meet the basic qualification requirements.  We evaluate each applicant who meets the basic qualification requirements on the information provided in the Assessment Questionnaire.  The View Assessment Questions which collects information on your training and experience related to this position.  It also, covers the following knowledge, skills and abilities/competencies in writing, oral communication, and interpersonal skills.  Ratings will be based on responses to the assessment questions in this document. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your score.  Please note: If a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is supported by your description of experience and/or education OR that your application is incomplete, your rating may be lowered or you may be assigned an "ineligible" rating. 


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This is not a permanent appointment and DOES NOT provide benefits such as health or life insurance, vacation or sick leave, or retirement benefits other than Social Security.


CTAP/ICTAP eligibility information:  Individuals who have special priority selection rights under the Agency Career Transition assistance Program (CTAP) or the Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP) must be well-qualified for the position to receive consideration for special priority selection.  To be well-qualified and exercise selection priority for this vacancy, displaced Federal employees must be rated at 85 or above on the rating criteria for this position. For those instances where the best qualified lists include applicants with scores less than 85, the well-qualified score becomes the lowest score on the best qualified list. CTAP and ICTAP eligible's must submit  one of the following as proof of eligibility for the special selection priority:  a separation notice; Notice of Personnel Action" (SF-50)  noting current position (or position at separation), grade level, and duty location or equivalent that documents separation; a copy of your most recent performance appraisal (at least "fully successful" or equivalent); an agency certification that you cannot be placed after injury compensation has been terminated; an OPM notification that your disability annuity has been terminated; OR a Military Department or National Guard Bureau notification that you are retired under 5 U.S.C. 8337(h) or 8456. Click here for more information.        

Selective Service:  If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law.  See

Veterans’ Preference: If you are entitled to veterans’ preference, you should indicate the type of veterans’ preference you are claiming on your résumé.  Your veterans’ preference entitlement will be verified by the employing agency.  For 5-point veterans’ preference, please provide your DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty), official statement of service from your command if you are currently on active duty, or other official documentation (e.g., documentation of receipt of a campaign badge or expeditionary medal) that proves your military service was performed under honorable conditions.  For 10-point veterans’ preference, please submit a Standard Form (SF) 15 , Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference and the required documentation.


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To begin the application process, please follow the three steps below.

STEP ONE: Submit a detailed resume.
If your résumé is going to come from the USAJOBS Resume Builder, you begin the process by clicking the Apply Online button near the bottom of this page. Your résumé will be attached only to the Application Package you complete and Submit immediately after you click the Apply Online button for this job announcement, not to any Application Packages you may already have created.  If your résumé is going to be one you prepared outside of USAJOBS Résumé Builder, click this link to begin the process:  Online Questionnaire.  Enter UM268593 in the "Create a New Application for This Job" panel, and then click "Submit" to begin the on-line application.You may submit your résumé either by on-line, by fax or by mail.

Your résumé should include detailed work experience relevant to this position including, duties and responsibilities; dates/hours worked for each job; college degrees you earned (if any).  Your resume should also include:
·  Vacancy Identification Number UM268593, title and grade(s) for which you are applying - Food Inspector, GS-05/07
·  Full name, mailing address (with zip code) and day/evening telephone numbers & valid email address
·  Job related skills 
·  Job-related honors, awards, credentials and special accomplishments 

STEP TWO: Complete and Submit the Occupational Questionnaire.  
You are encouraged to complete the Occupational Questionnaire on-line.  If you are unable to complete the questionnaire on-line, refer to the Alternative Methods for Applying section below for specific instructions.  Use these step-by-step instructions as a guide to completing the occupational questionnaire.  Read the instructions carefully.  Be sure to check your answers for accuracy before clicking on the “Submit” button.  You must answer the occupational questionnaire accurately.  You may take this Occupational Questionnaire assessment only once per year.

STEP THREE: Submit supporting application documents.
·  If applicable, copies of college transcripts for degree earned.  Official transcripts will be required prior to your start date if college degree is used to qualify for this position.
·  If applicable, any documents for veteran’s preference: DD-214 (Member 4 copy), SF-15, and supporting documents.
·  If you are or have been a Federal employee, please submit a copy of your most recent Notification of Personnel Action, Form SF-50.

Alternative Methods for Applying:  If you are unable to apply using the internet or would rather apply using a paper application, please refer to the contact information.


  • Resume
  • College Transcripts (if applicable)
  • Veterans' Preference documentation (if applicable)


Systems Section
Phone: (800)370-3747
Fax: (612)370-2060
TDD: 800-877-8339
Agency Information:
FSIS Human Resources Office
Butler Square West 4th Floor
100 North Sixth Street
Minneapolis, MN
Fax: (612)370-2060


Once the online questionnaire is received you will receive an acknowledgement email that your submission was successful. After a review of your complete application is made you will be notified of your eligibility and or referral to the hiring official. If further evaluation or interviews are required you will be contacted. 

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