How do I get a food handler card in New York?
It depends on the jurisdiction where you work. Check your local health department for their specific requirements. But typically, it's a three-step process:
- Take an approved food handler course
- Pass the test
- Present your training certificate to your employer or local health authority.
Our food handler training is ANSI-accredited and accepted by many New York employers and counties!
Does New York require food handler training?
Food handler training is required in a few New York counties, including
In many cases, those counties only accept certain training courses as valid. Check with your local county health office to find out where you can earn a valid food handler card.
In other parts of New York, food handler training is recommended. Some employers will require or prefer food handler certification because
Can I take an online course to get my food handler permit?
For jurisdictions where food handler training is required, you'll have to check with your local health authority to see what's allowed. Some of them accept online options, and some don't.
When you're not limited by law, online training can be an excellent way to get your certificate and learn food safety without the inconvenience and expense of an in-person course.
Our food handler permit course at Learn2Serve, by 360training, is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). That means it follows the highest standards for food handler training courses.
How long does a New York food handlers certificate last?
In jurisdictions that require a food handler certificate, expirations are set locally. As a result, the answer varies. You'll need to ask your employer or local health authority to be sure what's required.
Generally speaking, food handler certification usually needs to be renewed for 2-3 years. That kind of frequency is necessary to maintain your food safety knowledge.
Why should I take food handler training?
A few counties in the state of New York require food handler training to work in food service. Outside of those jurisdictions, some employers may require it.
But even when it's not required, food handler training helps you learn how to prevent foodborne illnesses for the health of your customers. It can also protect the life of that business—many a restaurant has gone under after a food-poisoning incident.
And New York has its share of such incidents. In both 2016 and 2017, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 64 foodborne disease outbreaks in New York. That's up from the 51 outbreaks reported in 2015.
If you practice what you learn in food handler training, you can help ensure the number of outbreaks starts going back down.
What jobs can I get in New York with my food handler license?
In New York, you can use your food handler license at a number of businesses. Some examples include:
- Coffee shops
- Food trucks
- Catering services
- Grocery stores
- Convenience stores
And within each establishment there are numerous jobs because the food and beverage industry in New York is growing.
According to the New York State Restaurant Association (NYSRA), in 2019 there were 865,800 restaurant and food service jobs, which translates to 9% of total employment. More importantly, that number is projected to grow 5.6% by the year 2029.
If you’re looking to get a job in the food and beverage industry in New York, here are some good options, along with how much money you can expect to make based on wage data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
|Job Title||Average Hourly Wage||Average Yearly Wage|
|Fast Food Cook||$12.60||$26,210|
If you get your food handler card before you apply for any of these jobs, you’ll be way ahead of the competition!
Where can I find more information about food safety in New York?
New York State Department of Health: The DOH is responsible for protecting public health by regulating food service establishments. That includes foodborne outbreak investigations, regulation development, and providing assistance and guidance to local health authorities. You can find valuable food safety resources on their website.