Agricultural inspectors require a high school diploma to be eligible for a state agricultural inspection training program. No prior job experience is necessary because the state usually provides comprehensive training for candidates and on-the-job training courses. Until they become proficient with their tasks, candidates may be supervised by experienced agricultural inspectors, to whom they report their findings. As they advance in their knowledge and skills, agricultural inspectors start to work independently. Although no college degree is required in most states, a bachelor's degree in agricultural sciences is a great advantage.
Qualities that are valued in a candidate for an agricultural inspector position are job flexibility and the ability to travel frequently, excellent communication skills, attention to detail, an excellent knowledge of state and federal regulations regarding food safety and patience. The ability to elaborate comprehensive and detailed reports is also a great advantage. Agricultural inspectors need to possess the ability to provide the necessary explanations to farmers and agricultural workers regarding regulations and food safety. They must be friendly and flexible, yet make no compromises when it comes to public health and product safety. Ultimately, agricultural inspectors make sure that high-quality, nutritious food is on our tables, which directly influences the health of a population. They must be willing to continuously refine their skills and update their knowledge according to the latest developments in agriculture and new regulations.