How to Get a Food Handlers Card in San Bernardino

By Staff Writer

In San Bernardino County, California, obtaining a food handlers card is required within 14 days of starting work. This applies to individuals involved in the preparation, handling and service of food.

As we explore food safety regulations in San Bernardino, this guide will shed light on who exactly needs a food handler card, the key topics covered in education programs and the benefits of earning your certificate.

Whether you're a seasoned chef, an aspiring culinary enthusiast or an event volunteer, join us on this journey to understand food safety training.

Who Needs a Food Handlers Card?

Completing approved training is proof of an individual's understanding of essential safety practices. It is a commitment to maintaining a high standard of hygiene in restaurants and professional kitchens. It also signifies a proactive stance toward preventing foodborne illnesses, ensuring proper sanitation and mitigating potential risks associated with food handling.

Individuals who need a California food handlers card include:

  • Food service workers
  • Food truck operators
  • Chefs and frontline cooks
  • Baristas
  • Servers
  • Event staff
  • School cafeteria employees
  • Managers who oversee kitchen operations
  • And more

In short, anyone who handles food must complete an approved education course. In most areas of California, this training is required by law within 30 days of hire. A San Bernardino County food handlers card is required within 14 days of starting work.

Regulations may change, and San Bernardino County Environmental Health Services is the authoritative source for the most current information. Contact the San Bernardino health department or your employer if you have specific questions.

Training Requirements

To obtain a food handlers card in San Bernardino, you must complete a county-approved food safety education course. These courses cover essential topics such as proper hygiene, foodborne illnesses, cross-contamination prevention and safe handling practices.

Once the course is completed, you must pass an exam to demonstrate your understanding of the material.

Lessons cover essential topics that ensure you understand proper safety practices. This should include:

  • Foodborne illness: Recognize common foodborne pathogens, understand their symptoms and learn how these illnesses are transmitted. Knowing how to handle high-risk ingredients and implementing proper hygiene practices can significantly reduce the risk of contamination.
  • Personal hygiene: Cleanliness is key. You must understand effective handwashing techniques, the correct use of personal protective equipment and the importance of reporting any personal illness to prevent the spread of pathogens.
  • Cross-contamination: Preventing cross-contamination involves separating raw and cooked items, adopting safe storage practices to avoid the transfer of harmful microorganisms and keeping surfaces, utensils and equipment clean and sanitized.
  • Allergen awareness: Identify common allergens, prevent cross-contact and effectively communicate allergen information to protect individuals with allergies. Proper labeling and handling practices help create a safe dining environment.
  • Customer service: Effective communication with coworkers and customers is essential. Training should address how to handle customer inquiries, resolve conflicts and maintain a positive dining experience.
  • Temperature control: Maintain proper temperatures during handling, preparation, service and storage. Discover the significance of temperature control, guidelines for cooking temperatures and best practices for refrigeration and freezing to avoid the "danger zone."
  • Sanitation: Comprehend the significance of maintaining a clean and hygienic environment. Train in sanitation, including thorough cleaning practices for all surfaces, equipment and utensils as well as the proper use of sanitizing agents.
  • Safe preparation and handling: Put it all together. This practice includes personal hygiene, preventing cross-contamination and ensuring proper temperatures to prevent spoilage.

San Bernardino County food handler cards are valid for three years from the issue date. Renewal includes completing a refresher course to update your knowledge and reinforce key concepts. Always check with your employer to determine your exact renewal date.

Online vs. In-Person Programs

When deciding between online and in-person training, you should consider your learning preferences, schedule and the nature of your work.

Online training is an easy option for students and busy professionals alike. It allows you to work at your own pace from any device with internet access. It is easy to satisfy training requirements whenever works best for you. This is ideal if you want a self-directed learning experience. Online learning also eliminates the costs associated with in-person training, such as parking and gas.

When selecting your course, whether online or in-person, make sure it is accredited and recognized by your employer before you proceed.

Choosing Your Program

Learning online offers a variety of benefits. Convenient, 100% online programs are designed to fit your busy schedule while offering safety instruction for many counties in California. Our partners at StateFoodSafety are accredited by the ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB), making it easy to satisfy San Bernardino County requirements.

Employers can explore bulk training and resources to stay updated on current laws. California businesses can learn about new laws such as Senate Bill (SB) 476, a mandate that requires employers to cover all the costs associated with this training.

eFoodcard offers approved training for many other counties in California. Start your learning journey with us today!