Slaughterers and meat packers process livestock into meat that will be packaged and shipped to the market for consumption. Slaughterers kill domestic animals such as cattle, chickens, turkeys, or pigs, in the manner prescribed by industry standards. They are charged with preventing any kind of animal abuse. They, along with meat packers, may also be responsible for draining blood, skinning the carcass, or removing bones. Some meat packers’ tasks are similar to those of butchers, who chop and slice meat into specific cuts for packaging, with the key difference being that meat packers typically cut apart the animal’s whole carcass shortly after it’s been slaughtered. Slaughterhouses are messy and loud environments, and the work is not easy; it requires dexterity, strength, and stamina. Slaughterers must work as a part of a group and spend most of their time performing repetitive tasks that many people may find unpleasant. Slaughterers and meat packers work in environmentally controlled indoor environments, and often work over 40 hours a week. Many slaughterers and meat packers have a high school diploma or equivalent but there are no formal education requirements.
What they do:
Perform nonroutine or precision functions involving the preparation of large portions of meat. Work may include specialized slaughtering tasks, cutting standard or premium cuts of meat for marketing, making sausage, or wrapping meats. Work typically occurs in slaughtering, meat packing, or wholesale establishments.
On the job, you would:
Remove bones, and cut meat into standard cuts in preparation for marketing.
Sever jugular veins to drain blood and facilitate slaughtering.
Tend assembly lines, performing a few of the many cuts needed to process a carcass.
Manufactured or Agricultural Goods
manufacture and distribution of products
Arts and Humanities
talking to others
understanding people's reactions
Hand and Finger Use
keep your arm or hand steady
put together small parts with your fingers
lift, push, pull, or carry
use your lower back and stomach
People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Enterprise resource planning ERP software
Integrated Management Systems Food Connex Cloud
Second Foundation NaviMeat
Inventory management software
AgInfoLink Meat Inventory Tracking System MITS
high school diploma/GED or no high school diploma/GED usually needed
New job opportunities are less likely in the future.