Food Sanitation & Management Course

All new and existing food service establishments are required to have a permit.

The Douglas County Health Department Food Sanitation Program enforces the Illinois Food Service Sanitation Code through the Douglas County Food Sanitation Ordinance which has been approved by the Douglas County Board. The primary objective of the food sanitation program is the protection of the consumer by assuring that food provided by food service establishments and retail food stores is protected against contamination by infectious agents or adulteration by toxic material. The Douglas County Food Sanitation Ordinance requires the issuance of permits to operate food service establishments and requires inspection of food service establishments (schools, restaurants, retail food stores, grocery stores, daycare centers, caterers, mobile food units, taverns, etc.) to assure food is received, stored, prepared, and served in a sanitary and wholesome manner. The ordinance covers all areas of Douglas County and requires all food service establishments to obtain an operating permit from the Health Department prior to opening and annually thereafter.

The food sanitation program also utilizes a Hazardous Analysis of Critical Control Points (HACCP) process to classify food service establishments based on risk criteria, which allows more intensive inspection and education activities to be focused on establishments with the greatest potential for causing a foodborne illness. The Health Department employs a Licensed Environmental Health Practitioner who is additionally certified through the Illinois Department of Public Health as a Food Service Sanitation Instructor. The Food Service Sanitation Manager Certification and the Food Handler Certification are offered by the Health Department to assist local food establishments in satisfying certification requirements for food service personnel.

There are three categories of food establishments:

  • Category I Establishments are establishments that present a relatively high risk of causing a foodborne illness. Typically, food is made in large quantities, cooled and reheated. Category I establishments may also serve immuno-compromised individuals such as children under the age of 4 and the elderly.

  • Category II Establishments are establishments that present a medium relative risk of causing foodborne illness. Typically, the food is made and served that day with all leftovers being discarded; food may NOT be reheated for service.

  • Category III Establishments are establishments that present a low relative risk of causing foodborne illness. The foods sold are usually prepackaged and the customer heats them is necessary. There is no complex food preparation.

Food Sanitation Management Course (FSSMC)

What is the FSSMC?

The FSSMC is a course designed to provide certification (and recertification) of those in the food service industry. The course provides training on food safety and handling, as well as a better understanding of why these things are important and the consequences that can occur.

Who has to have the FSSMC?

There are 3 categories of food establishments* and each have differing requirements regarding who is certified and how long a certified person must be on-site during business hours.

  • Category I establishments must have a certified food service manager on the premises at all times that food is being prepared.

  • Category II establishments must have a certified food service manager on duty 30 hours per week (or, if the business is open less than 30 hours, an FSSMC person must be on site the whole time.)

  • Category III establishments are not required to have a certified food service manager.

How much does the course cost?

The cost of the 15 hour FSSMC is $140.00. The Food Handler is offered FREE of CHARGE.

Who teaches the FSSMC and Food Handler?

The FSSMC course through the Douglas County Health Department is taught by Amanda Minor who is a Certified Food Service Sanitation Manager Instructor. The Food Handler is taught by a certified staff member.

Exemptions and Provisions:

  • New food service establishments except Category III facilities shall have a certified food service sanitation manager from the initial day of operation or shall provide documentation of enrollment in an approved course to be completed within 90 days.

  • Food service establishments which are not in compliance of having FSSMC staff because of employee turnover shall have 90 days from the date of loss of certified personnel to comply.

* There are three categories of food establishments:

  • Category I Establishments are establishments that present a relatively high risk of causing a foodborne illness. Typically, food is made in large quantities, cooled and reheated. Category I establishments may also serve immuno-compromised individuals such as children under the age of 4 and the elderly.

  • Category II Establishments are establishments that present a medium relative risk of causing foodborne illness. Typically, the food is made and served that day with all leftovers being discarded. Food may NOT be reheated for service.

  • Category III Establishments are establishments that present a low relative risk of causing foodborne illness. The foods sold are usually prepackaged and the customer heats them is necessary. There is no complex food preparation.