Meat, Poultry, and Fish Cutters and Trimmers helps professionals in meat, poultry, or fish cutter or trimmer careers find better opportunities across all specialties and locations.

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Also known as:  Crab Picker, Deboner, Fish Cutter, Fish Filleter, Frozen Meat Cutter, Meat Trimmer, Oyster Shucker, Poultry Cutter, Poultry Eviscerator, Shrimp Peeler


When it comes to buying meat, poultry, or fish, consumers want more than just a good price - they want products that have been prepared properly and safely. That's the responsibility of meat, poultry, and fish cutters and trimmers.

Cutters and trimmers first inspect the food to ensure that i ...
t's free of defects or bruises. Then they'll clean, slice, and section the product. With meat and poultry, bones and excess fat may be removed. With fish, the process of removing bones and other parts that are inedible is called filleting. These workers need to be skilled in using knives, cleavers, and electric cutting tools.

To meet government health standards, most processing areas are refrigerated. Low temperatures help keep the food fresh during preparation. Being able to pay careful attention to your job despite the chilly working conditions is important. Special sanitary measures must be followed as well, such as wearing hairnets and gloves.

Most cutters and trimmers work a steady 40-hour week. You can learn on the job, usually from a more experience worker. This work can be repetitive and physical strength may be required. Large sections of meat or boxes of poultry or fish can be heavy to move.

Whether working on an assembly line in a large processing plant or at a counter in the local supermarket, cutters and trimmers play an important role in helping feed the nation.
Use hand or hand tools to perform routine cutting and trimming of meat, poultry, and seafood.
Critical decision making
Level of responsibilities
Job challenge and pressure to meet deadlines
Dealing and handling conflict
Competition for this position
Communication with others
Work closely with team members, clients etc.
Comfort of the work setting
Exposure to extreme environmental conditions
Exposure to job hazards
Physical demands
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Clean, trim, slice, and section carcasses for future processing.
Remove parts, such as skin, feathers, scales or bones, from carcass.
Inspect meat products for defects, bruises or blemishes and remove them along with any excess fat.
Use knives, cleavers, meat saws, bandsaws, or other equipment to perform meat cutting and trimming.
Cut and trim meat to prepare for packing.
Handling and Moving Objects Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
Performing General Physical Activities Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
Training and Teaching Others Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
Controlling Machines and Processes Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
Production and Processing Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Food Production Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
Customer and Personal Service Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Mathematics Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Mechanical Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Personnel and Human Resources Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.
Education and Training Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Problem Sensitivity The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Oral Expression The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Manual Dexterity The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Oral Comprehension The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Arm-Hand Steadiness The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
Finger Dexterity The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
Speech Clarity The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
Speech Recognition The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Monitoring Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Active Listening Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Coordination Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Social Perceptiveness Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Time Management Managing one's own time and the time of others.
Judgment and Decision Making Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.