DOH to Enforce Food Safety Course Requirements
The Hawai‘i Department of Health’s (DOH) is reminding all food establishments to complete a food handlers education course approved by the department.
The new requirement became effective Sept. 2, 2017 and will be enforced beginning Sept. 4, 2018, as the DOH gave the industry a year to meet the new standards.
Section 11-50-20(c), Hawai‘i Administrative Rules (HAR), requires that the person in charge of a food establishment during normal work hours (including during food preparation) complete training in proper food handling in order to obtain certification.
DOH will accept certification recognized by the American National Standards Institute. Proof of certification will be required during health inspections beginning Sept. 4, 2018.
“Extensive studies have shown food establishments with managers formally trained in food safety have fewer occurrences of critical violations during routine inspection,” said Peter Oshiro, Sanitation Branch manager. “This lowers the risk of contracting a food-borne illness by the public. This is a true win-win situation for the food establishments and for public health.”
The new food handlers training requirement also applies to individuals and organizations that intend to distribute food at special events (and therefore need a special event permit) and purveyors of homemade food who distribute products such as cookies and breads directly to consumers.
Food Safety classes are offered at no charge by the DOH, statewide. Resources are also listed for online classes offered by DOH approved vendors as well as multilingual classes available for a fee (usually less than $15).
To sign up for DOH sponsored classes go online.