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Information on Illinois Food Handler Cards

Certification is required for all Illinois foodservice workers to protect the public and ensure that the food that is stored, prepared and served by foodservice workers throughout the state remains healthy at all times. Foodservice workers have the responsibility to the establishments that they are working for and to the people they are serving to use the safest techniques and maintain an understanding of all possible harmful effects of the food they serve. The required course provided to all Illinois state foodservice workers cover food-borne illnesses, proper sanitation, safety and cleanliness. Upon completion of the required courses, each employee is eligible to take the state food handler's card examination and receive their certification. Food handler's cards are available online as well. As of January, 2011, the cost was $10.

Additionally, each food service or food-processing establishment must have at least one employee with a Food Service Sanitation Manager Certification (FSSMC). This certification requires a 15-hour course, offered by the state's Department of Health through various community colleges, whereupon completion each applicant is eligible to take an additional exam.

View A List of Illinois Foodservice & Sanitary Agencies.

The following agencies provide information about food service certification and food handler's cards throughout the state of Illinois including Champaign, Chicago, East St. Louis, Evanston, Highland Park, Lake Forest, Oak Park, Peoria, Quincy, Rockford, Skokie, Springfield and Urbana.

Illinois Department of Public Health
Phone: (800) 782-7860

Foodservice Resource Associates, LLC

Illinois Restaurant Association
33 W. Monroe, Suite 250
Chicago, IL 60603
Phone: (312) 787-4000 / (800) 572-1086

Culinary Schools in Illinois

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