In the state of Florida, anyone responsible for the storage, preparation, display, or serving of foods in public establishments must receive “food service manager certification.” This also goes for anyone who has direct supervision of employees who handle food. What’s it all about and how does one acquire such a noble title? Don’t sweat it, One Fat Frog Restaurant Equipment is here to light your path…
Under Florida Statutes, food service establishments are required to meet manager certification requirements, unless exempted. So who’s gotta be certified and who doesn’t?
Locations requiring certification include, but are not limited to:
• Fraternal organizations
• Mobile food units (food trucks) and caterers that are required to maintain a Department of Health food certificate
• Detention facilities
• Residential facilities that are required to maintain a Department of Health food certificate. This includes, assisted living facilities, hospices, adult day cares, intermediate care facilities for the developmentally disabled, and prescribed pediatric extended care facilities.
And here’s a look at food service establishments exempted from Department of Health certification requirements:
• Bars and lounges
• Public and private schools (provided that the food service is operated by school employees)
• Civic Organizations
• Theaters and cultural even locations that are required to maintain a Department of Health food certificate
For those locations that are required to have a certified manager present, the number of employees is also a factor. If three or more employees are present, handling food, one of them must be a certified manager and present at all times. Establishments with two or less employees are not required to have a manager present at all times, just during periods of operation.
To become a certified food manager, applicants must pass a certification exam administered by any approved Manager Certification Test Provider. The Florida Department of Health does not require applicants to attend any kind of training or exam preparation course, but they are wicked helpful. Below are a lit of numbers for more information and to schedule an exam. When you can, be sure to ask for the Florida Department of Health, Food Manager Certification test.
Certification is valid for five years from the date it is issued.
The National Registry of Food Safety Professionals: 800.446.0257
The National Restaurant Association: 800.765.2122
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