Food Safety Training

Policy

Category: Food Safety
Subject: Food Safety Training
Division: Health Protection
Policy Number: CA.80.01.102
Effective Date: January 26, 2016

POLICY STATEMENT

It is the policy of Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (WDGPH) Health Protection Division, to prevent or reduce the incidence of food-borne illnesses through increasing the food safety awareness of food handlers and improving their food handling practices.

In accordance with the Food Safety Protocol, as current, under the Ontario Public Health Standards, it is the policy of WDGPH to ensure the availability of food handler training program(s), in accordance with the Guidance Document for the Provincial Food Handler Training Plan, as current, for all food handlers in WDGPH; and to provide opportunities for food handlers to challenge the certification exam using prior work experience or other approved training options.

SCOPE

This policy applies to all WDGPH employees working with food handlers.

REFERENCES AND RELATED FORMS, POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

Corresponding Procedure: CA.80.02.102 Food Safety Training Procedure
Ontario Public Health Standards; Food Safety Protocol, as current
MOHLTC; Guidance Document for the Provincial Food Handler Training Plan, as current.

CONTACT FOR INQUIRIES

Manager, Health Protection Division

APPROVED BY

Director, Health Protection 


Procedure

Category: Food Safety
Subject: Food Safety Training
Division: Health Protection
Procedure Number: CA.80.02.102
Effective Date: January 26, 2016

PROCEDURE

Administer Food Safety Training Course

1. The subject lead Public Health Inspector (PHI) of the food safety training program will regularly review the food safety training manual to ensure that it is consistent with government policies and procedures, in particular, the Ontario Food Premises Regulation and the Ontario Public Health Standards; Food Safety Protocol, as current.

2. The subject lead PHI of food safety training will develop a schedule of the food safety training courses planned for that year, typically one per month. The program manager and/or subject lead may increase the number of courses offered per month, in accordance with demand.

3. The food safety training course schedule will be posted on the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (WDGPH) website and those who are interested can register for it online, over the phone, or in-person at a WDGPH office. As per the Food Safety Protocol, as current, priority will be given to food handlers and managers of high-risk food premises, over those in moderate- and low-risk food premises.

4. The cost of attending the course is $50 per person (including tax) and includes the exam and certificate. This fee must be paid in full to complete the registration process. Clients registering for the course online or over the phone must pay by credit card. Reception is responsible for the initial registration, but if more expertise is required, they will forward the client to the Health Protection Division Program Assistant (HPD PA), to complete the process. Clients registering for the course in-person, at a WDGPH office, may pay with cash, cheque, credit or debit card.  Full payment must be received at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled course date – full payment will confirm registration.

5. Food handlers who are affiliated with non-profit, charitable or philanthropic organizations organized for relief of persons in need that prepare or serve food as part of the organization’s mandate, receive a 50% discount on the initial food handler course. Examples of these organizations include food banks, churches and emergency shelters. Secondary school students, with valid identification, and WDGPH employees can take the food safety training course free of charge. In extreme financial hardship situations, on a case by case basis, the subject lead PHI may waive the fee completely.

6. Individuals wishing to cancel their registration must notify WDGPH at least 24 hours prior to the start of the scheduled course in order to receive a full refund.

7. The food safety training course is a full day course and will be conducted by the subject lead or another designated PHI. A minimum of 10 persons are required to run a course, and the course maximum is 25 persons. The course should be completed within the normal seven hour business day. For off-site courses, full payment is required before actual course date. A minimum of ten persons to be invoiced for every off-site course.

8. A food safety training course binder and presentation kit is available with the subject lead(s) in Guelph and Fergus. Binders contain the required materials for delivering a food safety training course.

9. The designated PHI presenting the course is responsible for purchasing juice, water and snacks for participants. Snacks and drinks are only purchased for courses held in WDGPH offices. Gift cards will be provided by management for purchases.

10. The application form will be completed by all participants before the food safety training presentation.  A course evaluation form will be completed by all participants after the food safety training presentation.  Photo identification must be presented by each participant prior to the start of the exam and verified by the PHI. Identification must include the participant’s full name and photo to be accepted.

11.  The PHI delivering the course will grade the exams. Participants must obtain a minimum of 70% on the exam in order to become certified. Unsuccessful candidates may be re-examined once, at no cost, before having to pay regular price for additional exam attempts. Candidates who score between 66-68% can be asked supplementary exam questions at the discretion of the PHI, in order to increase their mark, one time only. Verbal exam results may be provided upon request. Participants who choose to re-write the exam must do so within three months of their initial attempt.

12. The graded exams, along with all other completed documents will be submitted to the HPD PA. The subject lead will receive final certificates from the HPD PA, and will check for accuracy before they are distributed by the HPD PA. Exams completed in Fergus and Orangeville will be checked for accuracy by the PHI subject lead in Guelph then distributed by the HPD PA.

13. Upon successful completion of the course, a wallet size card and wall sized certificate will be issued to the candidate.

14. A condensed one-two hour presentation may be conducted by PHI staff upon request. The presentation will be completed at no charge. No minimum participant number is required. Condensed presentation cannot be used as a pre-requisite to write the certification exam or to recertify. 

Administer Certification exam
PROCEDURE:  

1. Food handlers who are not able to attend the food safety training course offered by WDGPH can challenge the exam in another way. Individuals who can show prior food handler training, or prior food handler certification will be permitted to sit the exam. See list of national and provincial approved courses on WDGPH Food Safety Training website page.  http://www.wdgpublichealth.ca/?q=businessfoodcert.

2. The certification exam will be administered by the assigned PHI according to the exam schedule in Guelph. It will be administered by the area PHI in Fergus and Orangeville as needed.

3. The HPD PA will create a CSR (Complaint Service Request) for all the challenge exams scheduled in Guelph, for the current year, and assign to the PHI who is responsible for administering the exam according to the schedule, or as available in Fergus and Orangeville. PHI intake will input information and examinee names into the CSR for the exam on that date.  For Fergus and Orangeville, PHI Intake or HPD PA will create the CSR for all challenge exams and assign to the area PHI.

4. Off-site challenge exam requests are created by the HPD PA, and assigned to the area PHI. HPD PA to contact Finance to follow-up with invoicing.

5. Photo identification must be presented by each registrant prior to the start of the exam and verified by the PHI.  Identification must include the registrant’s full name and photo to be accepted. 

The exams used will be the versions provided from the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care (MOHLTC). Exam versions will be available in offices for use. Exam booklets are to be returned afterwards, and are to be kept confidential.

6. The fee for writing the certification exam is $15 per person (including tax) and includes the certificate. This fee can be paid by cash, credit card, or debit in-person at a WDGPH office.  Payments for the certification exam must be received prior to the writing of the exam. Secondary school students and WDGPH employees who complete an approved food safety training course, can take the certification exam free of charge, based on proof of course completion. Secondary school students must present valid secondary school identification.

7. Individuals who are affiliated with non-profit, charitable or philanthropic organizations organized for relief of persons in need that prepare or serve food as part of the organization’s mandate, receive a 50% discount on writing the certification exam. Examples of these organizations include food banks, churches and emergency shelters.  In extreme financial hardship situations, on a case by case basis, the subject lead PHI may waive the fee completely.

8. The PHI who administers the exam will grade the exams. Participants must obtain a minimum of 70% on the exam in order to become certified. Candidates who score between 66-68% can be asked supplementary exam questions at the discretion of the PHI, in order to increase their mark, one time only. Exams will not be returned to the candidates; however candidates may review their exam with the examiner on request.

9. The graded exams will be submitted to the HPD PA. A wallet size card and wall sized certificate will be issued to the candidates who pass the exam. The PHI will then double check certificates for accuracy, and they will be distributed by the HPD PA.

10. Allowance will be made for candidates with special needs such as the allowance of an assisting person to assist with the course and writing the exam, and translation services can be made available.

11. Participants, who are challenging the food handler exam following completion of an on-line course or are re-writing the exam after a failed attempt, must do so within three months of completing the on-line course, or writing the initial exam.

Provision of Certificate
PROCEDURE:  

1. The graded exams, application forms and course evaluation forms from participants will be sent to the HPD PA. The HPD PA will enter this information into the appropriate database.

2. The HPD PA will prepare all certificates and cards and will mail them along with a letter to the food handler or the employer of the food handler.  The subject lead will receive final certificates from the PA, and will check for accuracy before they are distributed.

3. A copy of the certificate number and marked exam will be kept on file for each participant. Records will be kept for a ten year period, from time of exam date.

4. Duplicate certificates can be issued to food handlers who request it. The cost for writing the certification exam includes one free re-print if requested. The cost of a duplicate certificate thereafter is $12 including tax.

5. The validity of the certificate is five years and will appear on the certificate.

RESPONSIBILITIES

Management will:
  • Support Public Health Inspectors in delivering the food safety training program; and
  • Plan, implement and evaluate food safety training programs.
Employees will:
  • Administer the Food Safety Training Course ensuring all training materials are up to date and consistent with government policies and procedures;
  • Administer and grade Food Safety challenge exams; and
  • Issue Food Handler Certificates to successful candidates.

REFERENCES AND RELATED FORMS, POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

Corresponding Policy:  CA.80.01.102 Food Safety Training
Ontario Public Health Standards; Food Safety Protocol, as current
Guidance Document for the Provincial Food Handler Training Plan, as current.

CONTACT FOR INQUIRIES

Manager, Health Protection

APPROVED BY

Director, Health Protection