Food inspector

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Food inspectors are those in the Federal Republic of Germany who are entrusted with the monitoring of foodstuffs , food additives , consumer goods (with food and / or body contact), tobacco products and cosmetic products and who are qualified in accordance with the Food Inspectorate Ordinance. Today there are around 2,500 food inspectors in Germany. As employees of the food control and veterinary offices of the public administration , they carry out the monitoring to protect consumers from health hazards, misleading and deception as well as arousing disgust. The food inspectors are responsible for checking compliance with laws and hygiene regulations in primary production companies, retail and industrial companies, food transport companies and in the food service sector. This also includes mobile or portable vehicles and stands, etc. a. at markets and folk festivals.


The above-mentioned companies are checked in the following types of checks:

  • Acceptance controls
  • Plan controls
  • Priority controls
  • Follow-up checks
  • Suspicion controls
  • Complaint controls

The controls are usually unannounced. The control frequency results from a given risk assessment adapted to the respective operating mode and situation, from weekly to once every three years.


Food inspectors take planned, suspected, complaint and comparative samples from the product groups falling within the surveillance area (food of animal and vegetable origin, food supplements, cosmetic products, e.g. hair dye cream, tattoo inks, consumer goods, e.g. food contact vessels, clothing, toys , Tobacco products). In addition, depending on the situation, swab or contact samples are taken.

Duties in execution

  • Conditions with deadlines in the control report (mildest means)
  • Warning without / with warning fee
  • Follow-up checks are subject to a fee
  • Disposal possibly with threat of a fine
  • Administrative offense proceedings (fines)
  • Criminal proceedings
  • Assurance
  • (Temporary) operational restriction or operational closure

In some federal states, food inspectors are also investigators for the public prosecutor's offices .

further activities

  • Handling of consumer complaints
  • Determination in the context of illness
  • Advice to consumers
  • Advice to food companies and traders
  • Training of traders and employees
  • Preparation of construction reports
  • Evaluation of the sample results and determination of associated errors in operation

Qualification / previous education

One of the following basic qualifications is required in order to complete the training to become a food inspector:

Further training examination according to the Vocational Training Act

Further training examination according to the Vocational Training Act (explanation see page 2 below): Initial occupation with training examination
cook Chef, diet cook
Restaurant specialist (ReFa) Servant
Hotel specialist (HoFa) Hotel master
Dietitian Housekeeping manager
Exit general technical college entrance qualification, then 1 year vocational school Ern. and housekeeping, then 1 year internship, then 2 years technical college for ecotrophology Ecotrophologist

Graduated ecotrophologist

2 years

3 years

brewer Brewmaster
Specialist for system catering see technician
Specialist for food technology, confectionery technology, fruit juice technology, etc. a. see technician

Advanced training test according to the craft regulations

Initial occupation with training examination
butcher Master butcher
baker Master baker
Confectioner Pastry chef
Housekeeper Housekeeper
Dairy specialist Dairy Master

Technician with state examination

Initial occupation additive Final occupation
Specialist for system catering Hotel Management School Operations manager

Specializing in hotels and restaurants (state-certified)

Specialist for food technology, confectionery technology, fruit juice technology, etc. a. Master training at IHK Industrial master for u. a. Confectionery and food technology
Professions with a nutrition physiology specialization:

u. a. Confectionery, brewery, dairy, meat, fish technicians

Housekeeping manager

Housekeeping and Nutrition Technician

Business economists for hotel and restaurant business

Law enforcement service

appropriate career orientation

Applicants from the service of general administration

at least three years in food control

University of Applied Sciences

Professions with a diploma (diploma in food technology professions) and a.
Food technician
Dairy technician
Meat technologists
Milling Technician

Ordinance on the technical requirements in accordance with Section 41 (2) of the Food and Commodities Act for the food inspectors involved in monitoring

Proof of requirements according to § 2 LKonV

Due to the formulation resulting from the provisions of the LKonV, there are often problems in practice with regard to the interpretation of the proof of requirements of § 2 LKonV.

For the training to become a food inspector in official food control, the following can be set

  1. Anyone who has a professional qualification with an additional training examination based on the Vocational Training Act, the Crafts Code or as a technician with a state examination in a food profession
  2. Officers of the law enforcement service;
  3. Applicants from the service of general administration who have each been employed in official food control for at least three years;
  4. Anyone who has a technical college degree with a diploma examination in a course of study that imparts knowledge and skills in the field of food, tobacco products, cosmetic products or consumer goods;

are equal to the persons according to No. 1.


The training lasts two years and is divided into a theoretical and a practical part.

Theoretical training (6 months, mostly 3 blocks) takes place in an external facility.

There are currently 5 training locations in Germany:

  • Academy for Public Health in Düsseldorf, Kanzlerstr. 4, 40472 Düsseldorf (The Düsseldorf Academy has a branch in Berlin)
  • Berufsakademie Sachsen Staatliche Studienakademie Plauen, Melanchthonstr. 1/3, 08523 Plauen
  • Baden-Württemberg State Academy for Veterinary and Food Sciences, Rosenbergstrasse 17, 70176 Stuttgart
  • Bavarian State Office for Health and Food Safety (LGL) Veterinärstrasse 2, 85764 Oberschleißheim

The practical part of the training takes place in the veterinary and food inspection offices as well as in the respective state examination facilities.

Contents of the training to become a food inspector

  1. General legal studies, general administrative law, principles of community law, administrative technology including automated data processing and communication technology
  2. Criminal law, criminal procedure law and administrative offense law, law of public safety and order
  3. Right to trade in food, products within the meaning of Section 2 No. 1 of the Tobacco Products Act, cosmetic products and consumer goods including wine law
  4. Commercial, commercial class, price and calibration law
  5. Product knowledge including the technology and handling of food, sensor technology
  6. Knowledge of goods, including the technology and the handling of products within the meaning of Section 2 Number 1 of the Tobacco Products Act, cosmetic products and consumer goods
  7. Food and industrial hygiene
  8. Environmental hygiene including waste disposal
  9. Nutrition including its biological basics
  10. Microbiology and Parasitology, Communicable Disease Prevention and Control, Disinfection, Sterilization and Pest Control
  11. Operational self-control systems
  12. Introduction to the psychological basics of surveillance work, especially communication and conflict resolution techniques

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Food Inspector Ordinance