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What does a Food Safety Supervisor do?

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  • Written By: Harriette Halepis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 14 November 2016
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A food safety supervisor has many different tasks, though the main goal of a food safety supervisor is to inspect a client's facility. Safety supervisors can be employed by food distributors, food manufacturing plants, or food packaging facilities. In addition, to ensure that a client's facility lives up to inspection standards, safety supervisors must be prepared to educate employees.

Often, it is the role of a food safety supervisor to provide technical training to employees of a food facility. This training includes relaying safety information, and administering food safety tests. Supervisors must also be willing to work with managerial employees in order to devise scheduled inspections, ascertain important food-related information, and create future manufacturing plans. On occasion, supervisors may be asked to attend lectures related to food-safety.

This position requires an extensive amount of clerical work, technical work, and business travel. Supervisors must be able to draft reports based upon food safety findings, and present these reports to clients. Thus, in order to thrive as a food supervisor, communication and presentation skills are essential.

In order to obtain a position as a food safety supervisor, candidates must have a bachelors of science degree. In addition, 5-10 years of experience within the food industry is crucial. Those seeking this type of job position must also be able to write coherently, possess great organizational skills, and be able to book travel arrangements with ease.

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Today, a large part of the food-safety world is electronic, which means that candidates must have a strong computer background. While candidates should display a strong education and personality, physical capabilities are also essential. Supervisors may be required to climb large machines, and to adequately inspect awkward machines by bending and stretching. Therefore, a supervisor must be in top physical shape in order to perform job duties.

A food safety supervisor must have a valid driver's license, be willing to drive to locations at a moment's notice, and be ready to confront facility management. A large part of this position is based upon communicating food-safety facts to facility management, which may be stressful at times.

Those seeking to gain a food safety supervisor position should gain experience within the food manufacturing field prior to apply for this type of position. People with a strong educational and work-related background are often successful within this field. In addition, people that stay abreast of current food-safety guidelines and trends tend to gain well-paid food safety positions.

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letshearit
Post 4

@manykitties2 - I took a food safety course through my workplace and was surprised at the amount of things that your work doesn't normally teach you. I help out in the kitchen at a small restaurant and when we took the course we learned all about food safety temperature requirements, proper cleaning and maintenance of our work areas among other things.

There was even a few online food safety classes we could take. It just required us to log in and complete some simple classes and watch some videos. I think that all people in the food services should have basic food safety training. I know it helped our restaurant be cleaner.

manykitties2
Post 3

My friend works as a food safety supervisor and you would be surprised at the amount of food safety training the job takes. I was surprised to learn he had to go for a food safety certification program and go through a bunch of food safety courses during his work to keep up with the latest issues.

I think that food safety jobs are really important especially now with the number of cases of people getting ill from tainted foods. It seems like you can't go a day without hearing about E. coli poisoning. I think that it would be much worse without people checking out the conditions in the places where our food is produced.

whiteplane
Post 2

Where do U go to get food safety training? When I worked in restaurants I had to get a food safety certification, but this was really nothing more than a sheet of paper that said you knew how to wash your hands after going to the bathroom. I knew lots of people that had them and cooked in very dirty ways.

I am interested in getting more advanced training. Food health and safety became a weird passion of mine after I got a terrible case of food poisoning. I was in the hospital for four days. Now I am thinking that I might like to make a career out of ensuring that the food we eat is safe and clean. What is the top school for this kind of thing?

jonrss
Post 1

We might think of food safety inspectors as nerdy bureaucrats who are just looking to bust people, but they really have an important job. In the last few years there have been several high profile food contamination cases and people have died.

The food system is so vast and interconnected these days that there is the very real risk of lots and lots of people getting sick from tainted food. Some one has to put into place preventative measures and also have the expertise to trace a contamination to its source so that it can be stopped. This is where the food safety inspector comes in. I'm not exaggerating when I say that they save lives.

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