THE Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) is recruiting over 100 new posts in its Plant Health and Seed Inspectorate (PHSI) as it plans for an increase in activity at the end of the EU transition period on 31 December.

The roles cover a range of tasks such as: inspecting crops and fresh produce; helping to organise emergency measures to control outbreaks of pests or diseases; certifying items such as plant, seeds and grains for export; and ensuring required documentation is in order.

Ian Hewett, service delivery and EU exit director, underlined the importance of this recruitment: "This recruitment is a critical part of our preparedness for the UK’s final departure from the EU. The additional PHSI capacity will enable us to meet our goal of facilitating trade and maintaining our biosecurity."

Casey Higgins-King, one of APHA’s PHSI inspectors, said: "There is no typical day working in plant health, and that is what is so wonderful about this job! One day I am walking through forests, parks and gardens checking for Phytophthora ramorum. (algae-like organism called a water mould).

"The next I could be walking potato crops with other local inspectors, or I could be in a distribution centre, a garden centre, or plant nursery, carrying out surveillance for quarantine pests and diseases. I am constantly learning, adapting, and improving in this job."

The positions are all offered on a 24-month basis as a fixed-term appointment to external candidates, or as a loan to internal candidates from within the Civil Service, with the potential for extension or permanency.

The closing date for this round of vacancies is Thursday 6 August 2020

For more information, click here

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