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Helping you find a career as a Food safety officer

The role of a food safety officer is to ensure that food products are safe for consumption. Their job involves inspecting food processing facilities and procedures to ensure that the necessary regulations are being followed, as well as testing sample products to assess whether they are safe.


What does a Food safety officer do?
Typical responsibilities for a food safety officer will include:

  • Inspecting food processing facilities and procedures

  • Testing samples of food products

  • Investigating complaints

  • Carrying out risk assessments and considering how risks could be reduced

  • Ensuring working practices are safe and comply with legislation

  • Keeping records of inspection findings and producing reports that suggest improvements

  • Leading in-house training with managers and employees about health and safety issues and risks

  • Outlining safe operational procedures which identify and take precaution against all relevant hazards

  • Producing management reports, newsletters and bulletins

  • Carrying out regular site inspections to check policies and procedures are being properly implemented

  • Reviewing operational procedures

Skills & interests required for a Food safety officer
Food safety officers have to be passionate about keeping people safe and ensuring that only good quality food products are released for public consumption. They will need to be able to explain complicated information to members of the general public in a clear and straightforward fashion.

A food safety officer will also be likely to work in unpleasant environments (e.g. abattoirs or fish processing plants) and therefore will need a strong stomach!
- Ability to Work Under Pressure
- Attention to detail
- Communication
- Health and safety
- Negotiation
- Organisation
- Teamwork
- Verbal Communication
- Written Communication
What hours does a Food safety officer typically do?
Working hours are typically Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. However, food safety officers may be required to work irregular hours in the case of an incident or due to shift work.
What environment is a Food safety officer based in?
The work of a food safety officer is generally office based, but potentially the role may require time in a factory or plant.
How much does a Food safety officer travel?
Travel during the day is common for those with responsibilities across different factories and workplaces.
How much does a Food safety officer get paid?
Salaries can vary between location and organisation.

Starting salaries can range from £14,000+ per annum. The average salary for the role of a food safety officer is £27,600 per annum; while an average salary for a food safety manager is around £38,000 per annum.

More experienced food safety officers can earn up to £52,000 per annum.
Perks & benefits
As a food safety officer there are potential opportunities to gain work, or travel, overseas.
What qualifications does a Food safety officer need?
A food safety officer will be expected to have a degree. There are an increasing number of degree apprenticeships available via employers which will mean that you gain hands-on experience in a supporting role while completing your qualification.
Further reading
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