InstructorLisa Berger
TypeOnline Course
Student Enrolled1117
Certificate75% of quiz marks
(1 ratings)
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Lisa’s Profile

Lisa Berger is widely recognized as a leader in food safety education and training. Ms. Berger graduated from Boston University with a Masters degree in Public Health. She was an epidemiologist for the State of Massachusetts fighting infectious disease. Ms. Berger is a Certified Professional in Food Safety (CP-FS) and has been a speaker at conferences throughout the country and contributor to many television shows dealing with food safety.

Video Introduction to Our Course

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RSS FDA Food Safety

Food Safety Training for ServSafe Certification

Food Safety for Managers is a perfect way to study for any of the nationally accepted exams like ServSafe, NRSFP, or Prometrics. The class is rated as 8 hours of study time but if you took advantage of all the video and study materials it could take well over 16 hours to complete. The level of depth is controlled by you. Please be aware that all online food safety courses offer the training only and you must pass an exam approved by your jurisdiction to become certified. The cost of the exam is not included with the online course fee and even though there are online exams, they must be taken in the presence of a registered proctor to prevent cheating. We can help you find the closest testing center (there are thousands nationwide).

You can choose how you learn:
Video, audio, the written word, quizzes, extra study materials, choose any or all these options as you go through the course.

You can choose where you learn:
All you need is an internet connection and a smart phone, tablet or computer.

You can choose when you learn:
After dinner, during a break at work, play the audio while you are making dinner!

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Section 1Introduction
Lecture 1IntroductionFree Preview


Welcome to my course! You can follow along in order by using the next and previous buttons at the bottom of each page or you skip around the menu using the menu in the right side bar. There are audio versions of most of the lectures as well as Video excerpts from some of our live classes.

This Chapter will teach you more about the basics of food safety. It will cover the following topics:
Note From Author
Introduction to Food Safety
The Importance of Food Safety
Your Job is to Prevent Foodborne Illness
Regulatory Agencies
Management Responsibilities

Lecture 2A Note from the InstructorFree Preview

A Note From Your Instructor

I want to let you know that although I find humor in food safety, I take it very seriously and am very passionate about my work as a food safety consultant. Personally, I have experienced first hand the effects of a foodborne illness called campylobacter. I was sick for weeks and had abdominal pain so severe that I thought my appendix had burst. Professionally, I have been involved with many outbreaks of foodborne illness and in some cases, have worked with families of those who have lost loved ones to a foodborne illness. My goal in teaching these classes, writing this book, and working with hundreds of food service establishments over the years is to help reduce the number of cases of foodborne illness.

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Lecture 3Introduction to Food SafetyFree Preview

Introduction to Food Safety

You are most likely taking this class because you are required by your employer, prospective employer, or your health inspector to take a “Food Protection” certification class in order to get a job, remain employed, open an establishment, or to keep your establishment open if your health department has discovered you’re not in compliance with food safety regulations. If you are like most people attending a food safety class, you are most likely dreading it. Perhaps food safety is not the most interesting topic, at least to your average person, so we will do our best to keep your interest while reading this book. We love to use examples of things we have seen and see every day in food service establishments (both serious and comical) to illustrate points, and in some cases to simply entertain you so that you too can find the humor in food safety.
So, what is a foodborne illness? It is a disease caused by eating food (which includes beverages) that has something harmful in it. This something harmful could be a bacteria, virus, chemical, or physical object that could cause injury. Every year in this country, we have approximately 48 million people who develop a foodborne illness. Forty Eight Million! That’s a lot. Of those 48 million people who get sick every year, there are approximately 128,000 hospitalizations and about 3,000 deaths. Yes, 3,000 people die each year of a food- borne illness in this country.

Let’s compare this to another safety issue that we are all very aware of – fire. At a conference a couple of years ago, a fire marshal presented statistics on fire related injuries and deaths. He explained that every year in this country, there are approximately 3,000 deaths from home fires (in 2010, there were a little over 2,600). These deaths were either caused by smoke inhalation or exposure to toxic gases. I remember sitting in my chair (thinking privately) – that’s it? Yes, that sounds horrible on my part, but when you consider that we have the same amount of deaths every year from fires in this country than from foodborne illness and that we as a country are doing far less to prevent foodborne illness than fires, it doesn’t seem right. We need to have the same commitment to food safety as we have to other hazards in our lives. You, as a provider of food to large numbers of people (whether it be a hundred or a million people a year), have an obligation to serve these people safe food. Foodborne illness can be prevented.

This textbook is based on 2013 FDA Food Code and will prepare you to take any one of four the nationally accredited exams – ServSafe, the National Registry of Food Safety Professionals, Learn2Serve and Prometrics. Some of the regulations discussed in this book may be slightly different from the regulations in your state, county, city, town or jurisdiction as not all jurisdictions have adopted the FDA’s Food Code. The quizzes at the end of the chapters were written to prepare students for multiple choice questions and are comparable, but not identical to, questions from any of the four above-mentioned exams.

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Lecture 4The Importance of Food SafetyFree Preview

The Importance of Food Safety

So, why is food safety important to you? Well, you don’t want your customers getting sick from your food. This is the most important reason. However, there are other reasons that weigh heavily, such as your bottom line. One illness or outbreak (which is defined as two or more cases that have been confirmed by a laboratory) at your establishment could cost you tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars. This could happen as a result of an increase to your insurance premium, loss of business, damage to your reputation, the cost of correcting violations, and legal costs, just to mention a few.

Speaking of legal costs, what about the liability issues here? If someone gets sick from eating food at your establishment, is out of work for days due to illness, or they die, you can and will be held legally liable. What if many people get sick? The liability issues grow exponentially. The fact is, restaurants and handlers of food and food-related products have a legal responsibility to maintain a high level of product safety for their consumers. Many negligent companies have been tried in court and have had to pay out huge sums of money as a result of these foodborne illnesses. Below are examples of a few cases.

In 1993, $15.6 million was awarded in a case against Foodmaker, Inc. (who is the parent company of Jack in the Box), for an outbreak of E. coli. (A total of $100 million was Jack in the Box’s total outlay for the outbreak).

In 1996, $12 million was awarded to the families of children who were injured after consuming Odwalla apple juice.

In 2001, $4.75 million was awarded on behalf of 11 children for an E. coli outbreak involving a school lunch program in Washington State.

In 2008, $3 Million was awarded to 14 people who were seriously sickened by E. coli at a restaurant in Oak Grove, Oklahoma.

In addition, you are required by law to serve safe food and it is your responsibility to be aware of what your local codes require. Many jurisdictions are now following the FDA Model Food Code. Reading this book and taking a course is an excellent way to begin to understand your responsibilities for serving food safely.

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Lecture 5 Your Job is to Prevent Foodborne IllnessFree Preview

 Your Job is to Prevent Foodborne Illness

People are eating out today more than ever and it’s up to you to provide them with the safest food possible. Maybe you’re already doing a good job here, but my experience shows me there is always room for improvement. Its is funny to hear the comments from some of our clients – usually the ones who have been in trouble with the health department. “I don’t know why we have to follow all these rules, you should see all the other restaurants nearby.” Your job is to protect YOUR customers and YOUR business. And, what you see at these other places will come back to haunt them! These rules are not arbitrary, they are there to prevent foodborne illness.

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Lecture 6Regulatory AgenciesFree Preview

Regulatory Agencies

There are many regulatory agencies that are responsible for food safety in this country. For most of you, your business is most likely considered a food establishment. A food establishment is a restaurant, hotel, caterer, food service in a hospital or nursing home, a day care center that serves food, a mobile food establishment, or a temporary food establishment. In most states, regulations for food establishments are written at the state level. Most states have adopted some or all of the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) Food Code. For example, Massachusetts has adopted about 97% of the FDA’s 1999 Food Code and has additional supplemental regulations to those adopted from the FDA. It is up to the 351 cities and towns in Massachusetts to enforce this food code. Other states and local regulatory authorities may include all the latest regulations from the FDA. These regulatory authorities are involved with food establishment inspections, illness complaint investigations, and plan review just to mention a few.

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) is responsible at the national level for developing and applying disease prevention and control, and for developing environmental health, health promotion, and health education policies and activities designed to improve the health of people in the United States. As far as food safety is concerned, the CDC is involved with numerous activities which include providing educational materials regarding food safety, investigating outbreaks of foodborne illness, and publishing weekly reports on various illnesses including those caused by food. The US Public Health Service (PHS) is responsible for “protecting, promoting and advancing the health and safety of the nation”.

Finally, the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) has many agencies, one of which is the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), responsible for ensuring that the nation’s commercial supply of meat, poultry and egg products is safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged.

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Lecture 7Management ResponsibilitiesFree Preview

Management Responsibilities

Since you are enrolled in this course, chances are that you are defined in the Food Code as the “Person In Charge” or PIC. It is important to know that the FDA defines “Person In Charge” to mean the individual present at a food establishment who is responsible for the operation at the time of inspection. Designation of a PIC during all hours of operations ensures the continuous presence of someone who is responsible for monitoring and managing all food establishment operations and who is authorized to take actions to ensure that the Food Code’s objectives are fulfilled. A primary responsibility of the PIC is to make sure the code requirements are being followed.
Based on the risks that come with working with food, the PIC shall demonstrate to the regulatory authority knowledge of foodborne disease prevention, application of the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point Principles, and any requirements of the FDA Food Code. The ability to show thorough food safety knowledge is referred to as “Demonstration of Knowledge”. The following is quoted directly from the 2013 FDA Food Code:
The PIC shall demonstrate this knowledge by:

(A) Complying with this Code by having no violations of critical items during the current inspection;
(B) Being a certified food protection manager who has shown proficiency of required information through passing a test that is part of an accredited program; or
(C) Responding correctly to the inspector’s questions as they relate to the specific food operation. The areas of knowledge include:

(1) Describing the relationship between the prevention of foodborne disease and the personal hygiene of a food employee;
(2) Explaining the responsibility of the PERSON IN CHARGE for preventing the transmission of food- borne disease by a food employee who has a disease or medical condition that may cause foodborne disease;
(3) Describing the symptoms associated with the diseases that are transmissible through food;
(4) Explaining the significance of the relationship between maintaining the time and temperature of potentially hazardous food – time temperature control for safety food (PHF/TCS food) and the prevention of foodborne illness;
(5) Explaining the hazards involved in the consumption of raw or under-cooked meat, poultry, eggs, and fish;
(6) Stating the required FOOD temperatures and times for safe cooking of potentially hazardous food – time temperature control for safety food (PHF/TCS food) including meat, poultry, eggs, and fish;
(7) Stating the required temperatures and times for the safe refrigerated storage, hot holding, cooling, and reheating of potentially hazardous food – time temperature control for safety food (PHF/TCS food);
(8) Describing the relationship between the prevention of foodborne illness and the management and control of the following:

(a) Cross contamination,
(b) Hand contact with ready-to-eat food,
(c) Handwashing, and
(d) Maintaining the food establishment in a clean condition and in good repair;
(9) Describing food identified as major food allergens and the symptoms that a major food allergen could cause in a sensitive individual who has an allergic reaction.
(10) Explaining the relationship between food safety and providing equipment that is:
(a) Sufficient in number and capacity, and
(b) Properly designed, constructed, located, installed, operated, maintained, and cleaned;
(11) Explaining correct procedures for cleaning and sanitizing utensils and food-contact surfaces of equipment;
(12) Identifying the source of water used and measures taken to ensure that it remains protected from contamination such as providing protection from backflow and precluding the creation of cross connections;
(13) Identifying poisonous or toxic materials in the food establishment and the procedures necessary to ensure that they are safely stored, dispensed, used, and disposed of according to law;
(14) Identifying Critical Control Points in the operation from purchasing through sale or service that when not controlled may contribute to the transmission of foodborne illness and explaining steps taken to en- sure that the points are controlled in accordance with the requirements of this Code;
(15) Explaining the details of how the PERSON IN CHARGE and food employees comply with the HACCP plan if a plan is required by the law, this Code, or an agreement between the regulatory authority and the food establishment;
(16) Explaining the responsibilities, rights, and authorities assigned by this Code to the:

(a) Food employee,
(b) Conditional employee,
(c) PERSON IN CHARGE, (d) Regulatory authority; and
(17) Explaining how the PERSON IN CHARGE, food employees, and conditional employees comply with reporting responsibilities and exclusion or restriction of food employees.
Not being able to demonstrate knowledge in any topic described above is considered a serious violation and may be grounds for revoking your permit to operate a food service establishment. So, study, study, study and enjoy the course!

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Lecture 8Prepare for QuizFree Preview

Prepare for Quiz

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Section Quiz
Section 2Risk Factors for Foodborne Illness
Lecture 9Major Causes of Foodborne IllnessFree Preview

Major Causes of Foodborne Illness

Major risks of food borne illnessThe major risk factors associated with foodborne illness can be broken down into several major categories: in- adequate cooking, improper holding temperatures, contaminated equipment, poor personal hygiene and food obtained from unsafe sources.
Examples of inadequate cooking include cooking chicken breasts to 155° F (68° C) instead of the required temperature of 165° F (74° C) or higher, cooking ground beef to 135° F (54° C) instead of the required temperature of 155° F (68° C) or higher, or even cooking eggs “over-easy” which does not meet the required temperature of 145° F (63° C) or higher.
Examples of improper holding temperatures include holding sliced tomatoes at a salad bar at 50° F (10° C) instead of the required temperature of 41° F (5° C) or lower, holding a pan of meatballs at a buffet at 125° F (52° C) instead of the required temperature of 135° F (57° C) or higher, or displaying pizza at room temperature instead of placing it in a warming unit that is able to hold it at 135° F (57° C) or higher.
Examples of contaminated equipment include using a cutting board to slice raw chicken then using that same cutting board to chop lettuce, storing a cooked product in a container that had previously stored raw meat, or dropping a spoon on the floor and continuing to use it without cleaning and sanitizing it properly.
Examples of poor personal hygiene include not bathing on a daily basis, not washing hands regularly, not washing hands thoroughly, not wearing gloves while handling ready-to-eat food (RTE food), leaving open cuts or sores on hands and wrists uncovered, or coming to work while sick.
Finally, an example of food obtained from an unsafe source would be purchasing pies from your friend’s mother who has decided to go into the pie business. She decides that she is going to make all the pies in her home and sell them to restaurants. Let’s say she also has a day care business in the home. You’ve got these pies being prepared and baked in a home where there are kids in diapers. Maybe they also use the kitchen counter as a table to change these diapers. The counter is not cleaned thoroughly – the same counter where the dough is going to be rolled. You get the point.
You should always be conscious of these major causes of foodborne illness whether you are at work or at home and during every step of food handling from the moment the food is purchased, to when it is received, stored, prepared, thawed, cooked, held and finally to when your customers are served.

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Lecture 10Those Most at RiskFree Preview

Those Most at Risk

Now that we have a general idea of what causes foodborne illness, let’s talk about those who are most at risk for developing a foodborne illness. Those most at risk include the very young, the elderly, and those with a weakened immune system. People with weakened immune systems include those who are on medications such as steroids or chemotherapy for cancer, those who have had transplants, or those who have HIV or AIDS. The food code refers to these groups of people as “highly susceptible populations”. These people are much more likely to develop a foodborne illness than the general population. Once they do develop a foodborne illness, they are much more likely to suffer severe consequences, perhaps even death. Although pregnant women are no longer classified a highly susceptible population, certain food should be avoided to prevent harm to the fetus. This food includes hot dogs and lunch meat that haven’t been reheated, soft cheese (unless made with pasteurized milk), refrigerated pâtés or meat spreads, smoked seafood, and raw (unpasteurized) milk or food containing raw milk. In addition, the following fish should be avoided because of the presence of methylmercury: swordfish, tilefish, king mackerel, and shark.

If you fall into one of these high risk categories, speak with your health care provider or research on-line how to prevent foodborne illness, as there are unique food handling requirements for each condition.

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Lecture 11 Potentially Hazardous Foods (PHF)Free Preview

Potentially Hazardous Foods (PHF)

Just like there are some people who are more likely to develop a foodborne illness than others, there are some foods that are much more likely to make people sick than others. These are referred to as potentially hazardous foods (PHF) or time/temperature control for safety foods (TCS). These two terms are being used interchangeably in the industry so you must be familiar with both.

We like to categorize potentially hazardous foods (PHF)/time temperature control for safety foods (TCS) into several categories.

One is high protein, animal based products like meat, poultry, dairy, fish, shellfish, and eggs.
Another category is “heat treated plant food” which is basically cooked vegetables (and fruit) such as baked potatoes, cooked rice, baked beans, and steamed asparagus.
The third category we refer to as “other”. Under “other”, we have food items such as cut melons (watermelon, cantaloupe, or honey dew melon), sliced tomatoes; raw sprouts (alfalfa sprouts, bean sprouts, or radish sprouts), soy products which include tofu and soy burgers, cut leafy greens such as lettuce and cabbage, and garlic-in-oil mixtures.
All of these items are considered “potentially hazardous” and must be treated as such: they must be kept hot (135° F (57° C) or above) or cold (41° F (5° C) or lower). These foods sitting at room temperature can and will make people sick.

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Lecture 12Prepare for QuizFree Preview

Prepare for Quiz

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Section Quiz
Section 3Types of Hazards
Lecture 13Types of Hazards
Lecture 14Bacteria
Lecture 15Bacteria That Cause Foodborne Illness
Lecture 16Viruses
Lecture 17Parasites
Lecture 18Toxins
Lecture 19 Fungi, Molds and Yeasts
Lecture 20Chemical Hazards
Lecture 21 Physical Hazards
Lecture 22Food Allergies
Lecture 23Prepare for Quiz
Section Quiz
Section 4Personal Hygiene
Lecture 24Personal Hygiene
Lecture 25Employee Habits and Practices
Lecture 26Preventing Contamination From Employees Hands
Lecture 27Proper Work Attire
Lecture 28Handwashing
Lecture 29Bare Hand Contact – Glove Use
Lecture 30Illness Policy
Lecture 31Prepare for Quiz
Section Quiz
Section 5The Flow of Food
Lecture 32The Flow of Food
Lecture 33Controlling Cross Contamination
Lecture 34Monitoring Temperature
Lecture 35Purchase & Receiving
Lecture 36Storage
Lecture 37Preparation
Lecture 38Cooking
Lecture 39Cooling
Lecture 40 Reheating
Lecture 41Holding
Lecture 42Service & Display
Lecture 43Prepare for Quiz
Section Quiz
Section 6Cleaning and Sanitizing
Lecture 44Cleaning and Sanitizing
Lecture 45Cleaning Agents
Lecture 46Sanitizing Procedures
Lecture 47When to Clean
Lecture 48Warewashing Machines
Lecture 49Manual Warewashing
Lecture 50Master Cleaning Schedule
Lecture 51Prepare for Quiz
Section Quiz
Section 7Pests
Lecture 52Pests
Lecture 53Identifying the Signs of Common Pests
Lecture 54Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
Lecture 55Deny Pests Entrance to Your Building
Lecture 56Prevent Pest Access to Food, Water and Shelter
Lecture 57Hire a Professional Pest Control Operator (PCO)
Lecture 58Prepare for Quiz
Section Quiz
Section 8Facilities & Equipment
Lecture 59Facilities & Equipment
Lecture 60Floors, Walls and Ceilings
Lecture 61Equipment & Utensils
Lecture 62Handwashing Stations
Lecture 63Facilities – Warewashing Machines
Lecture 64Water, Sewer and Plumbing
Lecture 65Refuse
Lecture 66Ventilation & Lighting
Lecture 67Facility Design / Plan Review
Lecture 68Maintenance
Lecture 69Prepare for Quiz
Section Quiz
Section 9Active Managerial Control
Lecture 70Active Managerial Control
Lecture 71 Training
Lecture 72HACCP
Lecture 73Deliberate Contamination of Food
Lecture 74Food Recalls
Lecture 75Emergencies
Lecture 76Foodborne Illness Complaints
Lecture 77Prepare for Quiz
Section Quiz
Section 10You Have Completed the Course
Final Quiz