What is the Alabama Food Handlers Card?
The Alabama Food Handlers Card is a certificate given to accredited employees on completion of their course on food safety procedures. The course provides food manager certification training to employees on food safety protocols, regulations, and techniques to ensure and maintain safety standards in food establishments.
The Alabama Department of Public Health spells out the importance of food safety to reduce the risks of food-related health ailments. The certification is proof that the food handler has an understanding of sanitation, cooking food in safe temperatures, and cooling within reliable times. The health department lays emphasis on food safety to prevent potentially hazardous foodborne diseases and the growth of pathogens.
Customers today are paying keen attention to safety protocols observed by their food service establishments. Employers, in turn, expect their employees to be properly trained in food safety practices to keep their businesses afloat. When workers are trained in food safety measures and follow the approved food sanitation requirements, they are better equipped to meet the safety standards laid down by law.
Is the Alabama Food Handlers Card Mandatory?
Alabama state does not make it mandatory for food workers to possess a certification of food handler training. However, some regions and municipalities within Alabama do require employees in the food industry to possess an Alabama food handler certificate. These include county health departments like Jefferson County and Mobile County.
Even though a food handler is not required by law to possess a food safety card, the food establishment supervisor or manager is. According to the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH), a certified person in charge (PIC) is required to be on the premises during all operating hours. This supervisor or manager ought to have completed a state-approved accredited training program and passed the Certified Food Protection Manager (CFPM) test.
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Still Want the Alabama Food Handlers Card?
According to The Centre for Disease Control (CDC), 1 in 6 Americans get sick and 3,000 die due to contamination by food and beverages. CDC also states that a single contaminated food can lead to the widespread distribution of a disease causing hundreds to fall sick. Educating employees about the correct way to handle food in public, through certified food safety training courses is vital for public health. Efficiently trained professionals are more likely to reduce the potential risks associated with foodborne illness and improve local health.
With a food handler license, a food worker is likely to rank high in the job stakes. Employment can be found in the following foodservice categories-
- Fast Food
- Counter Services
- Grocery & Convenience Stores
Where to Get Your Alabama Food Handlers Card
Food service professionals keen on the Alabama food handlers card can complete their food handlers training with any course provider accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). The course can be taken online. The online training course is fast and pocket-friendly and can be completed in a couple of hours.
Employees can show their employer their Alabama food handler card as proof of their safety training. Some employers insist on retaining a copy of the card for their records. Outside Alabama, health inspectors of several states examine employees' food handlers certificates on their rounds of foodservice establishments. Within Alabama, few jurisdictions, like Jefferson County and Mobile County follow these rules.
3 Steps to Your Alabama Food Handlers Card- Step 1 Do the Course
The Alabama Food Handlers Card is given to food workers on completion of the food handler training course. The curriculum of the course comprises 17 topics on food safety, framed around state and local government guidelines. Topics include foodborne illnesses and pathogens, cross-contamination, hygiene, and efficient techniques of food handling.
Who can take it?Professionals involved in preparing, storing, or handling food in food establishments are recommended to take the food safety training course. They include people working in restaurants, food trucks, and convenience stores. Chefs, food servers, vendors, caterers, supervisors, and food delivery staff, are food workers who can do the course.
The Alabama food handlerstraining course can be completed online in two hours. Websites that offer the course charge up to $10 for the program. They provide all the course material necessary for the food handler test, which follows the course.
Food Handling Course Topics
- Food-borne illnesses and their causes
- Sanitation and cleanliness measures
- Food temperature control
- Safe cooking procedures
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Step 2 to Your Alabama Food Handlers Card- Take the Test
The Alabama food handler test is based entirely on the course material. After going through the concepts, the test can be immediately taken online. The duration of the test is one hour. The test is fairly easy, and over 90% of participants attempting it pass on the first try.
However, those who fail the test can attempt a retest if they score less than 80%. Some course providers allow participants to take the test a second time for free. However, if they fail the second time too, they have to pay to enroll for the course and test all over again.
Step 3 to Your Alabama Food Handlers Card- Print the Card
Once the course is complete, a certificate of completion is available for download. It is also sent to participants via email. On entering an employer's details in one's online course account, the Alabama Food Handlers Card Certificate can also be emailed directly to the employer.
The card can be renewed every two years. This brings a food worker up to speed with current food safety training. It teaches them new, modified, and enhanced techniques of food handling.
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