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State of Washington Classified Job Specification


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Class Code: 567B
Category: Agricultural Operations

Class Series Concept



This is the journey professional level of the series. Positions inspect, grade, and certify grain and other agricultural commodities to ensure food safety for human consumption and animal feed.

Distinguishing Characteristics

Under general supervision, positions independently perform grain inspection functions to accept or reject sub lots. Positions must meet US grain inspection competencies and maintain five (5) agricultural marketing commodity inspection licenses, to include wheat, corn, soybeans, sorghum and one (1) additional license applicable to assigned region.

Typical Work

Inspects grain and agricultural commodities by testing, grading and certifying lots according to the United States Grain Standards and Agricultural Marketing Acts; issues and signs grade certificates; 

Works directly with elevator superintendent and others in coordinating inspection and loading activities; 

Performs re-inspections upon request of interested parties; 

Declares material portions when subsamples exceed acceptable quality conditions- conducts subsample analysis and declares material portions of rejected grain sub lot; 

Samples, weighs and/or oversees weighing and sampling of grains and commodities; checks work of Grain Sampler/Weighers; 

Assists in training new staff on the fundamentals of grain and commodity inspection, identification of grain varieties and classes, and the application of the United States Grain Standards; 

Provides continuous information as to the grade and quality of grain during loading; 

Checks for accuracy and corrects all inspection and weighing documents of the vessel upon completion of the vessel. Checks ships' holds to determine fitness for grain cargo and other commodities; recommends needed corrective measures to ships' officer or agents; issues ship sanitation certificates in compliance with State and Federal regulations; 

Reads, interprets, comprehends and follows instructions and methodology in policies, procedures, directives, notices, rules and regulations relating to the position and industry needs; 

Uses laboratory methods to extract mycotoxin from grain; conducts qualitative testing methods to determine toxins such as Aflatoxin, Vomitoxin, Fumonisin, Zearalenone and Ochratoxin to ensure conformance with Food Drug Administration (FDA) standards; 

Operates special grain inspection equipment to determine dockage, moisture, test weight per bushel, Protein Near-Infrared Transmittance (NIRT) technology to determine protein, wet gluten, oil and starch in whole grains; Perten Falling Number Analyzer to measure the alpha-amylase activity; and/or other mechanical determinations as required; 

Performs other related work as required.

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of: function of all laboratory equipment used in the determination of grades or other quality descriptions; varieties of grain; grain handling procedures at elevators, freight terminals and shipping points; United States Grain Standards Act governing sampling and certifying weights and grades of grain; Department standards and procedures for grain inspections; government contracts issued to processors; calculating machines and records procedures. 

Ability to: detect conditions that would adversely affect grain grades; deal tactfully and effectively with stakeholders; train, assign, direct and check grain inspection sampling and weighing; utilize acute color and odor perception; keep accurate records; prepare accurate and legible reports; climb and work safely and with agility at high levels and around moving equipment under extra-hazardous conditions, and often in very high temperatures; work in environments that include exposure to chemicals, fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides.

Legal Requirement(s)

Positions require a valid Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) and 21 specific licenses required by the US Grain Standards Act and the USDA Agricultural Marketing Act. In addition, positions require four (4) basic USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) commodity inspection licenses to include wheat, corn, soybeans, sorghum, and one (1) additional license based on assigned region. 

There may be instances where individual positions must have additional licenses or certification. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the appropriate licenses/certifications are obtained for each position.

Desirable Qualifications

Bachelor’s degree with major study in agronomy or closely allied field, 


One year of experience as a Grain Sampler/Weigher and a USDA license to inspect wheat. 

Equivalent education and experience may be substituted on a year-for-year basis.

Class Specification History

New class; adopted June 13, 2019, effective July 1, 2019.