Food Safety and Sanitation in Toronto
Toronto Food Safety
If you work as a food handler or food service worker in Toronto, you will be familiar with the Ontario Health Protection and Promotion Act of the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care. In the province of Ontario, there is a bylaw that mandates food safety and sanitation training for all food handlers who work in medium-risk and high-risk food facilities. The certified food handlers have to be trained by a provider that is approved by Toronto’s local health authorities.
Food handlers looking for training and certification have to look no further than Toronto First aid. We are approved and endorsed by Toronto First Aid’s local health authorities; any credential you receive from us will be valid all over the city of Toronto and the province of Ontario.
Enrolling in a food safety and sanitation training course is incredibly easy. We have made it our mission to make quality training courses accessible to the public so enrollment can now be completely processed on our website – the Toronto First Aid homepage. Visit the site and you will see an online form you fill up on the site itself before clicking submit. Contacting us is easy as well! You may reach us via e-mail or telephone phone, or even visit us during business hours!
Toronto First Aid has two food safety courses offered – level one, the basic course, and level two, the advanced course. Basic training is the minimum training required by law for certified food handlers; it involves introduction to basic concepts of foodborne illness, personal health and hygiene, microbiology, and housekeeping. It runs for eight hours over a single day.
The advanced course targets food handlers who have managerial or supervisory positions, basically workers who are in charge of managing the food establishment. It is a longer course, taking two days to complete, but covering everything an owner or manager needs to know about running a food establishment. The only requirement for level two food safety is a level one training credential.
Credentials from Toronto First Aid expire five years after they are first issued. A trainee can renew his or her certificate by signing up for a refresher class and taking the certification exam again. Because we are approved by Toronto’s health authorities, our credentials will be accepted all over the city (and the province as well).
Getting started: hand hygiene
The best way to prevent the contamination of food is to practice proper hand hygiene. Hand washing is not the only form of hand hygiene you should know how to perform. Hand hygiene includes hand rubbing (using sanitizer and/or alcohol) and using protective gear like gloves. When food handlers constantly wash their hands (especially after handling raw food), the risk of food becoming contaminated with bacteria becomes very low, therefore decreasing the risk for consumers acquiring foodborne illness.
The most common microorganisms that cause foodborne illness are:
- Norovirus (responsible for more than half of foodborne illness cases)
- Campylobacter spp.
- Clostridium perfringens
- Salmonella (expect Salmonella typhi)
- Staphylococcus aureus