How to Obtain a Food Handler's Permit
Canadian Food Handler's Permits
In Canada, food safety training is usually taken care of by your employer. If you are starting your own business, however, you need to obtain your own licensing. The specific regulations vary in different provinces and territories, but in general, food workers in Canada need to have Food Handler certification, often in conjunction with Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System certification. Training can be provided by many different health programs and educational courses, therefore there are many different -- and equally viable -- licenses and cards.
If you are starting a food handler's job in Canada, your employer is usually responsible for training you personally or sending you through an outside training program. If you seek a license on your own, you should contact Canadian Food Safety Training Inc or your municipal Health Board to learn your options.
Food Handler's Permit in the United States
Each American state has its own food safety training programs and certificates, many of which are available through an online training program. You can opt into a local training program through your employer or the local Health Board, or simply take a Food Handler's test online and have your card or certificate mailed out to you after successful completion.
Although online food handling tests are easy to find and simple to take part in, the certificate or card they issue may not be legally accepted where you live and work. To avoid undue legal ramifications, it is best to enroll in a training program directly with the local health board and keep the card they give you.
Food Handler's Permits in the United Kingdom
In the United Kingdom, the Food Standards Agency oversees legislation surrounding food handling; but no cards, licenses or certificates are required by food workers. They are, however, required to undergo food safety training and receive proper supervision until they are capable and knowledgeable enough to work on their own.
Certificates for food preparation and handling are available through locally based educational and health facilities, and once certification is achieved, it does not expire.