ServSafe Training

Was at ServSafe training all day at a local hotel conference room. the instructor, an independent contractor, mentioned that he wished he didn’t have to pay for the conference room, and would gladly host the session at a local restaurant private party room, in exchange for free instruction to their managers. Plus the students would probably eat lunch at the restaurant.

I don’t have a room, but for some of you, maybe hosting a similiar type training session might be a nice way to fill in early week lunches…

I took my course and am certified, my question is, does anyone know what would happen if the health department came into an establishment and found someone working that is not certified. I know you have to have 1 person on staff at all times during normal operating hrs.


I am not sure if it is different in other areas or not, but where I live (Charlotte County, Florida) if there are 3 or less (may be 2 but I am almost positive it is 3) people on shift, they can work under the certification of the restaurant owner / manager. However once you have more than that, the manager (usually the best option) needs to be certified.

Pretty sure we’re in a county where the interpretation is, if we’re found without a license holder working during any hours food is being served…not prepped which is odd, we’re closed for the day. I’ve found out in the last 3 years we’ve been in this world that so much of “what happens if” is determined by “who” is looking. Even in the same Health Dept. office each of the 3 inspectors are SO different from each other it’s head-spinning.

The training is offered in our area but there is no requirement for anyone to take it or to have anyone on staff that has.

Where I am, the health department wants the owner to be certified, and everyone else working there can work under the owner’s certification. I don’t know how the franchises, or bigger shops work.

I did get info from my health inspector, They require to have at least 1 person on staff who is certified at all times during business hrs & it does not matter if its the owner or just a worker thats certified & if you are caught with no one certified on staff they will shut you down for the day. I was wondering becuase I am the only one certified in my store, soooo looks like I have to get at least 2 more people certified so I do not have to stay here 24-7 like I have been doing

It varies county by county and state by state. Check what the regulations are with your local health department. In my county only one employee has to be certified-any employee, and it doesn’t matter when or how many hours that employee works. A friend of mine has a place in a county where they require a serv safe manager on duty at all times. No they don’t get shut down but they get a fine and reinspection fee in not in compliance.

I recently sponsored a class for 14 of my employees at one of my restaurants. The instructor was a prior ‘Health Inspector’ for our county. It turned out great, really good training and atmosphere. I paid my employees regular pay while they attended the 8 hours of training/testing and of course, paid for the certification. To qualify for the class, other than being recommended by supervisors, employees had to sign a letter of agreement that said they’d pay for the certification if they left the company within 6 months.

Yup, check your local regulations. In our County we can have one, or a hundred certified employees, but there as to be at least one on premises anytime we’re selling food. I’ve always found it odd that it could be a dishwasher or someone not even in the kitchen touching food but I think what they want most is my certification money!