Thunder Bay First Aid is a training provider of quality food safety and sanitation in the city. In middle of the hustle-and-bustle of the business district, students continually flock to us through the year in order to get food safety training. We offer different programs as well, focusing primarily on first aid. If you need food safety training and certification, you’ve come to the right place at Thunder Bay First Aid.
Why is food safety a big deal in Thunder Bay?
Food safety is not only a big deal in Thunder Bay, but the entire province of Ontario. In Ontario, the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care drafted the Health Protection and Promotion Act. This act governs all facilities or establishments in the city that handle food in anyway, whether the food has a charge or is served for free. According to the act, there has to be a trained and certified food service worker present at the facility at all times.
When the act was first drafted in 2008, only high-risk food facilities were required to have certified staff members. As of the 2010 amendment, medium and high-risk facilities have to have a number of its staff members certified and trained by a provider that is approved by the Thunder Bay local health authorities. A low-risk facility is one that handles low-risk food, such as candy.
Viewing food safety from an international standpoint
Food safety is a major concern of the World Health Organization. Diarrhea is one of the major symptoms of foodborne illnesses and its complications kill more than two million people each year all over the world. For a condition that is very easy to prevent, there are still so many people affected by foodborne illness. In Canada alone, it is estimated that 4.5 million are infected by foodborne illnesses annually – if you imagine the percentage of that are actually people in rural areas who don’t have access to clean water and health care, a simple case of ‘food poisoning’ becomes very serious.
According to the WHO, the microorganisms that most commonly cause foodborne illness are the following:
- Campylobacter spp.
- Clostridium perfringens
- Salmonella (expect S. typhi)
- Staphylococcus aureus
Training courses in food safety
Food Safety Level 1 is a basic training course for frontline food service workers and anyone interested in learning food safety and sanitation. It is the minimum amount of training required to get food safety certification. Topics such as microbiology, foodborne illness, personal hygiene and housekeeping/sanitation are included in this eight-hour (one day) program.
Food Safety Level 2 is an advanced training course for management and supervisory staff members (but anyone with a level 1 credential can take the program). It is a longer program, taking 16 hours (two days) to finish. Students are required to take level 1 training before taking level 2.
Refresher classes are shorter classes for students looking to retake the certification exam to renew their credentials in food safety. Credentials are only valid for five years and have to be replaced by taking the certification exam again.