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Food Manager Certification
Contact the Food Safety and Sanitation Program
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Contact these approved testing providers directly for date, times, and locations for exams or concerning lost certificates/cards.
Accredited Food Protection Manager Certification Exams:
- 1 AAA Food Safety (AAA Food Safety, LLC) (714) 592-4100
- APS Culinary Dynamics (DBA: World Food Safety Organization)
- Learn2Serve (formerly 360training) (877) 881-2235
- National Registry of Food Safety Professionals (800) 446-0257
- National Restaurant Association Solutions (formerly ServSafe) (800) 765-2122
- Responsible Training / Safeway Certifications, LLC (866) 409-9190
- The Always Food Safe Company, LLC
What is a Food Manager?
A “Food Manager” is a person who is responsible for the food establishment and/or has direct authority, control or supervision over employees who engage in the storage, preparation, display, or service of foods. They are not required to have the “job title” of manager.
A "Certified Food Manager or Certified Food Protection Manager" is one who has passed a written certification exam, which has been approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) National Accreditation Board (ANAB)-Conference for Food Protection (CFP), which demonstrates a basic knowledge of food protection practices. It is the responsibility of the certified manager or person in charge to train or ensure the training of all employees under their supervision and control who engage in the storage, preparation, or serving of food, or cleaning of equipment, utensils, or food contact and non-food contact surfaces, and to do so in accordance with acceptable sanitary practices as described in Chapter 64E-11, Florida Administrative Code.
What Type of Food Establishments under the Department are Required to Have a Certified Food Manager?
Food service establishments as defined in Section 381.0072, Florida Statutes, are required to meet manager certification requirements, unless otherwise exempted. All establishments required to have a certified food manager shall designate, in writing, the food service manager or managers for each location. The establishments include, but are not limited to:
- Public and Private Schools using a contracted food service provider (i.e. food workers not employed by the school)
- Fraternal organizations
- Mobile Food Units and Caterers that are required to maintain a Department of Health Food Sanitation Certificate
- Detention facilities
Residential Facilities that are required to maintain a Department of Health Food Sanitation Certificate, such as, but not limited to:
- Assisted Living Facilities
- Adult Day Cares
- Intermediate Care Facility for the Developmentally Disabled (ICFDD)
- Prescribed Pediatric Extended Care (PPEC)
- Crisis Stabilization Units
- In-patient Drug, Alcohol, and Mental Health Facilities
The following types of food service establishments are exempted from Department of Health manager certification requirements:
- Bars and lounges serving beverages only and non-time/temperature control foods like chips
- Public and private schools (provided that the food service is operated by school employees)
- Civic Organizations
- Theaters that are required to maintain a Department of Health Food Sanitation Certificate
- Food service establishments that limit their food service operation to non-time/temperature control for safety prepackaged food items
- Culinary arts and similar food programs, which do not offer, sale, or serve food beyond the program’s instructors and direct participants
When is a Certified Food Manager required to be present and facilities serving Highly Susceptible Populations:
Highly susceptible populations are persons who are more likely than other people in the general population to experience foodborne disease because they are immunocompromised, children pre-school through elementary school, and older adults. Establishments that serve highly susceptible populations or establishments having three or more food employees/volunteers at one time engaged in the storage, preparation or service of food, must have at least one certified manager present at all times when these activities are taking place.
All other establishments (general populations with two or less employees/volunteers) must have a certified manager or managers responsible for all periods of operation, but the manager or managers need not be present at all times.
How Do I Become a Certified Food Manager?
Please contact the approved test provider for times, dates, and cost of the examination as well as ordering training materials and scheduling a preparation course. Make sure you request the Florida Department of Health, Food Manager Certification test information, since these providers do offer examinations for other food related programs.
To become a certified food manager in compliance with Department of Health requirements, individuals must successfully pass a certification examination administered by any approved Manager Certification Test Provider (see below for listing).
Applications are available directly from the approved providers. The Department of Health does not require individuals to attend an examination preparation or training course; however, preparation courses, study guides, and other helpful materials are offered by each of the approved test providers.
Please contact the approved test provider for times, dates, and cost of the examination as well as ordering training materials and scheduling a preparation course. Make sure you request the Florida Department of Health, Food Manager Certification test information, since these providers do offer examinations for other food related programs. The test provider issues a certificate to successful participants, which is valid for a period of five years from the date of issuance. Each certified food manager must become re-certified through testing after the five year period. All establishments shall designate in writing the food service manager or managers for each location.
Is My Establishment Required to Have More Than One Certified Food Manager?
Under most circumstances, more than one certified food manager will be necessary. However, those establishments that do not serve a highly susceptible population and have no more than two food workers/volunteers engaged in the storage, preparation, display, or serving of food, at one time, are allowed to have one designated certified food manager.
What Happens if the Certified Food Manager Resigns or is Terminated from the Establishment?
When a food service establishment's certified food manager ceases their employment and renders the establishment "out of compliance" with food manager certification requirements, the establishment has 30 days to come into compliance.
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