PLAINVIEW — The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service is offering a professional food manager certification training course Sept. 26-27 in Plainview.
The cost is $125, and the program will be held at the AgriLife Extension Service office in Hale County at 225 Broadway St., Suite 6. Registration and training fee is due by Sept. 11 by calling 806-775-1740.
The course will run 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m, both days. The fee includes training materials and a national food manager certification examination. The food manager’s certification is valid throughout the state for five years.
The course will cover:
- Identifying potentially hazardous foods and common errors in food handling.
- Preventing contamination and cross-contamination of food.
- Teaching and encouraging personal hygiene for employees.
- Complying with government regulations.
- Maintaining clean utensils, equipment and surroundings.
- Controlling pests.
The Texas Department of State Health Services jurisdiction requires each food establishment to employ one certified food service manager.
“The program is designed to prepare food service managers to pass the certification examination, and it will provide valuable education regarding the safe handling of food,” said Kay Davis, AgriLife Extension community and health agent, Lubbock County.
“Almost 50 cents of every dollar Americans spend on food is spent on meals prepared away from home,” Davis said. “Therefore, careful attention to food safety is important to help keep customers safe and satisfied.”
She said foodborne illnesses can cost an establishment thousands of dollars in lost wages, insurance and medical bills, so knowledge of how to prevent foodborne illness is crucial.
According to Davis, the benefits of improved food safety include:
- Increased customer satisfaction.
- Improved relationships with health officials.
- Prevention of bad publicity and lawsuits due to foodborne illness.
“Statistics indicate that foodborne illness continues to be a health issue in the U.S.,” Davis said. “Each year, one in six Americans will become sick, 128,000 will become hospitalized and 3,000 will die due to foodborne illness.”
For more information about AgriLife Extension’s Professional Food Manager Certification Training course “Food Safety: It’s Our Business,” call Deana Sageser at 806-291-5270 or Davis at 806-775-1740, or go to https://foodsafety.tamu.edu.