Food Safety Certification in Toronto
Toronto First Aid Food Handler Training
Toronto First Aid is a top provider of training programs in Toronto, Ontario. With the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care requiring food service workers in food establishments to receive training and certification, our food handler training program has become very popular over recent years. The program is a single-day program – consisting of a (1) classroom session and (2) exam session. Students are given workbooks used during the classroom session. This is the typical format for a full training course.
Students may also choose to simply take the exam. This is the self-study route, wherein students buy our workbooks and study on their own time – taking the certification exam when they feel they have prepared enough.
Note: Certificates for food handler training at valid for five years before they expire. You can sign up for a re-certification class on the Toronto First Aid website.
What training in food safety will entail
Food handler training focuses on one major and basic concept – food safety. A safe food handling process ensures that food products sold or served in the establishment are safe to be consumed by the public. The handling process starts from buying raw produce (e.g. meat, poultry, vegetables) to packaging the finished product. In restaurants or establishments that serve food (whether or not there is charge for the food), the handling process extends to serving the food and dishwashing.
We introduce our students to topics such as microbiology, prevention and management of foodborne illness, personnel hygiene and health, general housekeeping and sanitation, and food packaging and storage techniques.
The full training program runs between 6 and 8 hours, usually starting training at 8 or 9 AM and ending at 4 or 5 PM. The exam is around two hours long, but completion time will also depend on how fast the student answers the test.
Introduction to microbiology
The most commonly identified culprit of foodborne illness is either bacteria or viruses. The most common cause is the Norovirus, which is responsible for over 60 percent of foodborne illness cases. The other microorganisms that commonly cause foodborne illness are (1) Campylobacter, (2) Clostridium perfringens, (3) Non-typhoidal salmonella, and (4) Staphyloccocus aureus.
Bacteria and viruses usually thrive at room temperature, in a moist and warm environment. When food goes bad, bacteria and other dangerous microorganisms grow on them, making the food unedible. Mold is a kind of fungus that we usually see on bread that has expired. When contaminated food is ingested, it can cause gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain/cramps, and loss of appetite.
Fluid replacement is an integral part of foodborne illness management. For mild cases, oral rehydration is enough to stabilize the victim, but for severe cases (especially in pediatric and geriatric cases), intravenous fluid resuscitation might be needed.
Registration can be completed on the Toronto First Aid website. We have an online form, along with our contact details, so you can register using the method most convenient for you. We staff is well-trained and very accommodating – you may even get to see a training class in action if you visit our training location.