Do you want to work as a meat processor?
- Read about the most important info you need to decide on following this career.
- Follow the 7 points below and search for a tertiary institution near you for future studies. If you already are graduated, you may also search through our list of Jobs in the main menu.
- If you want to PLAN the way you need to prepare, then join our community in step 8 where you will learn everything, while chatting with other potential processors and experts from around the world. Prepare to be amazed!
UPDATED: 31 August 2020
1. What is a meat processing worker?
Meat processing workers perform a wide range of tasks, including handling, slaughtering and processing livestock, operating processing and rendering equipment, dispatching products, and keeping records.
2. What do they do?
Health / Farming and Livestock Management
A meat processing worker handles meat (red meat or poultry) from the moment the live animals arrive in the abattoir, to cutting and packing the meat for sale to the public. Different workers will be assigned different roles, depending on abilities and skills.
- Move and manage animals before they are slaughtered
- Move carcasses between freezers and processing stations
- Assist butchers with cutting carcasses
- Pack sliced meat into correct containers and sealed according to weight
- Keep area and work stations clean and sanitized
- Assist in loading packed meat for transport
- Administration and filing
Where they work:
Animal processing worker perform their duties mainly indoors.
Places of Employment –
They may be employed by large abattoirs, private butcheries and retail stores.
On average the income per year is around $25,000. This will differ from country to country.
The most difficult part is working with carcasses, which will contain blood and fat. They may also have to work overtime and over weekends to ensure strict deadlines are kept. This career may also involve handling dangerous machinery.
Future growth and Possibilities:
The annual growth of new jobs in the meat processing sector is predicated to be around 5%.
3. Which Skills are required?
The skills required for a career as a meat processing worker can be divided into two very important groups. The first is the group containing life skills, which are the core skills that are necessary or desirable for full participation in everyday life. The second group is career skills, or the specific skills required to allow a person to enter and operate effectively within a specific career. Some or maybe even all of the life skills can assist in strengthening the career skills, and they might even be the same for specific careers.
- Critical thinking
- Creative thinking
- Decision making
- Problem Solving
- Effective communication
- Interpersonal relationship
- Basic customer service skills
- Good health and physical fitness
- Good computer literacy
4. Which Subjects must I have at School?
The subjects you choose at school are important as they lay the foundation for further studies at college or university. While still at school, it’s also important to learn more about the animals you will work with, as well as gain some experience.
OZT has a list of various tertiary institutions where you can study further, after school. Each of these institutions also have their own Group page on OZT where you will find the exact subjects they require of you to have passed in school. Keep these requirements in mind, and discuss it with your school, guidance counselor and parents to ensure that you are prepared!
5. What will I need to Study?
The minimum requirement to become a meat processing worker is a High School certificate. Further studies is generally not required, but can be done to assist to obtaining managerial positions.
Courses in animal physiology, meat processing and first aid and safety within the workplace.
Short Courses are usually between a few weeks and a year.
Possible Career Preparation Paths:
If this is your dream career that you want to pursue, then it’s important to plan the way forward.
Why is planning important?
To ensure that you understand the requirements for your career, and that you are always prepared for the next step on the road towards your dream. A Preparation Path is like your road map to where you want to be.
Possible Combined Career Paths:
It is possible to sometimes combine two or more related careers. This normally happens when you study and practice a specific main career, but the knowledge and experience gained also help you to have a paying hobby or secondary income career.
Possible Alternatives (there are a lot more):
Stepping Stone Career:
Being a meat processing worker can also be used as a stepping stone career. A stepping stone career is one which is used to help you get to another career, normally because the other career is too difficult to reach (sometimes due to things like high fees etc).
You can begin as an intern processor after basic short courses and expert guidance (maybe working under a manager). The money made can then be used to pay for studies towards a promotion or another career, and the experience helps in gaining knowledge. One paying to help get to the other.
Some of the possible paths:
Training and apprenticeship:
Even though it is important to study to get into some of the animal careers, most of the skills you will need as a meat processing worker will be acquired through practice. This means that you will learn how to perform some of the daily tasks by actually doing it a few times and learning the steps.
In some cases entry level positions require training sessions even before you are allowed to actually perform your job duties. These sessions are offered by the place of employment, after you have successfully applied.
Apprenticeship is also possible where you need to learn skills from a more senior processor.
Join the Meat Processing Workers Group in STEP 8 to learn more and even interact with the educational institutions that will help you secure your dream career!
Average level of education of all the people who enter the career:
6. Licenses, Certificate, Registration and Professional Associations
Certain animal careers require some form of legal certification to prove that you can indeed do the work, and work with the necessary equipment.
Although not required by law, certifications may help workers establish their credentials and enhance their skills.
Learn more about requirements by joining OZT in STEP 8.
7. Where can I study further?
All of the above information will help you understand more about the Career, including the fact that there are different paths to take to reach it. But if you are almost done with High School (Grades 11 or 12), you also need to start thinking about further studies, and WHERE you will study.
See the List of Universities, Colleges and Online Training Academies who offer courses towards meat and poultry processing.
8. Join the OZT community
Join us as a special member and learn more about becoming a meat processing worker.
Members of the Platform have special access to:
- Info on the best places where you can study (colleges, universities and online)
- Expertly designed advice to prepare you for the career, and links to places where you can gain valuable experience. For some career experience is necessary, otherwise you wont get the job!
- Top notch info on each of the different species you will work with
- Make friends around the world and share knowledge
- Compete and win points, badges, games, prizes and certificates. Be the best of the best, while you learn and prepare!
If you have decided on being a Meat Processing Worker, please click on the JOIN GROUP button. Members will be directed to the Group, while non-members will be assisted to register first.
If this career is NOT the career for you, then you may return to the MAIN CAREER menu, and search for something different.
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