How to get training
The council does not run training for food safety but we do keep a list of regsitered food safety trainers.
What the law says
The law requires that food businesses must make sure that any staff who handle food are supervised and instructed and/or trained in food hygiene in a way which is appropriate for the work they do.
Those responsible for maintaining and developing the businesss food safety management procedures, which should be based on the principles of HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) must have received adequate training to enable them to do this.
What does this mean for my business?
There is no legal requirement to attend a formal training course or to get a qualification, but it can be an effective way of ensuring staff are trained in all the relevant areas/issues.
Training and understanding of food safety can also be obtained from on-the-job training, studying booklets and free guides produced by the Food Standards Agency (FSA), watching videos and DVDs, or undertaking an online course.
The above forms of study may not provide a certificate which can be used to demonstrate that appropriate training has been received, therefore it is important to keep a record of any training or study. The Safer Food Better Business pack is available free of charge from the Food Standards Agency can be used as a training manual and also contains training record sheets.
The supervision of staff is an important part of this legal requirement. Even when staff have received training they may not always follow procedures carefully, so unsafe practices will need to be corrected by a supervisor or manager before the food they have prepared is eaten.
Where can I attend a formal course?
We have produced a list of some local trainers who run formal courses in food safety, some of which are offered in languages other than English. In England there are three Accredited Awarding Bodies for food safety qualifications:
- Chartered Institute of Environmental Health
- Highfield Qualifications
- Royal Society for Public Health
These awarding bodies are accredited by the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation who are responsible for making sure that qualifications are correctly valued. Other courses or food safety qualifications may not be regulated in this way.
What level of qualification is right for me?
Level 1 courses
Half-day programme aimed at those who handle low risk wrapped food only, or those who have justed started work as part of an induction programme. The content of these courses is similar to what has been called the Essentials Of Hygiene in the Catering Industry Guide to Good Hygiene Practice.
Level 2 courses
One-day programme aimed at anyone who prepares unwrapped or high risk foods. These courses are not sufficient for food business operators or managers who need training in the HACCP principles.
Level 3 courses
Three-day programme aimed at food handlers who have a supervisory role. The course will include an introduction to the HACCP principles but may not be sufficient for candidates to conduct an analysis of a complex food preparation process.
Level 4 courses
Five-day programme aimed at food business operators and managers. The candidate may be required to undertake a workplace assignment such as produce HACCP procedures for their business.
How can I run my own courses?
Each of the Accredited Awarding Bodies listed above have their own requirements which are explained on their websites. Generally you will need to fullfill certain criteria and demonstrate teaching or training skills to become an accredited tutor.