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RULE §229.176Certification of Food Managers

(a) Purpose. This section is intended to provide the framework of certification requirements for food managers in accordance with Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 438, Subchapter G, Certification of Food Managers, supports demonstration of food safety knowledge, thereby reducing the risk of foodborne illness outbreaks caused by improper food preparation and handling techniques.

(b) Definitions. The following words and terms when used in this section shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

  (1) ANSI-CFP Program Accreditation--Accreditation by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Conference for Food Protection (CFP), which accredit programs as outlined in the CFP: Standards for Accreditation of Food Protection Manager Certification Programs.

  (2) Certificate--The documentation issued by a department-approved Internet examination provider licensee or an ANSI-CFP Program examination licensee verifying that an individual has complied with the requirements of this section.

  (3) Certification--The process whereby a certified food manager certificate is issued.

  (4) Certified food manager--A person who has demonstrated that he or she has the knowledge, skills and abilities required to protect the public from foodborne illness by means of successfully completing a certified food manager examination and becoming certified as described in this section.

  (5) Certified food manager examination--A department-approved Internet examination or an ANSI-CFP Program accredited on-site examination for food manager certification.

  (6) Department--The Texas Department of State Health Services.

  (7) Examination site--The physical location at which the department-approved examination is administered.

  (8) Food--A raw, cooked, or processed edible substance, ice, beverage, or ingredient used or intended for use or for sale in whole or in part for human consumption, or chewing gum.

  (9) Food establishment--

    (A) Food establishment means an operation that stores, prepares, packages, serves, vends, or otherwise provides food for human consumption:

      (i) such as a restaurant; retail food store; satellite or catered feeding location; catering operation if the operation provides food directly to a consumer or to a conveyance used to transport people; market; vending location; conveyance used to transport people; institution; or food bank; and

      (ii) that relinquishes possession of food to a consumer directly, or indirectly through a delivery service such as home delivery of grocery orders or restaurant takeout orders, or delivery service that is provided by common carriers.

    (B) Food establishment includes:

      (i) an element of the operation such as a transportation vehicle or a central preparation facility that supplies a vending location or satellite feeding location unless the vending or feeding location is permitted by the regulatory authority; and

      (ii) an operation that is conducted in a mobile, stationary, temporary, or permanent facility or location; where consumption is on or off the premises; and regardless of whether there is a charge for the food.

    (C) Food establishment does not include:

      (i) an establishment that offers only prepackaged foods that are not potentially hazardous;

      (ii) a produce stand that only offers whole, uncut fresh fruits and vegetables;

      (iii) a food processing plant;

      (iv) a kitchen in a private home if only food that is not potentially hazardous is prepared for sale or service at a function such as a religious or charitable organization's bake sale if allowed by law;

      (v) an area where food that is prepared as specified in clause (iv) of this subparagraph is sold or offered for human consumption;

      (vi) a Bed and Breakfast Limited facility as defined in these rules; or

      (vii) a private home that receives catered or home-delivered food.

  (10) Internet examination--A department-approved examination delivery system utilizing the Internet for food manager certification.

  (11) Law--Applicable local, state and federal statutes, regulations and ordinances.

  (12) Licensee--The individual, corporation, or company that is licensed by the department to administer a department-approved examination for food manager certification.

  (13) On-site examination--An ANSI-CFP Program accredited paper and computer-based examination for food manager certification administered by a certified food manager program.

  (14) Person--An association, corporation, partnership, individual or other legal entity, government or governmental subdivision or agency.

  (15) Personal validation question--A question designed to establish the identity of the candidate taking a certified food manager examination by requiring an answer related to the candidate's personal information such as a driver's license number, address, date of birth, or other similar information that is unique to the candidate.

  (16) Reciprocity--Acceptance by state and local regulatory authorities of a department-approved certified food manager certificate.

  (17) Regulatory authority--The local, state, or federal enforcement body or authorized representative having jurisdiction over the food establishment.

  (18) Two-Year Renewal Certificate--The certificate issued by the department from May 6, 2004 to April 24, 2008, verifying that a certified food manager has completed the application and submission of fees for renewal of a department-issued certificate.

(c) Certified food manager.

  (1) Certified food manager responsibilities. Responsibilities of a certified food manager include:

    (A) identifying hazards in the day-to-day operation of a food establishment that provides food for human consumption;

    (B) developing or implementing specific policies, procedures or standards aimed at preventing foodborne illness;

    (C) coordinating training, supervising or directing food preparation activities and taking corrective action as needed to protect the health of the consumer;

    (D) training the food establishment employees on the principles of food safety; and

    (E) conducting in-house self-inspection of daily operations on a periodic basis to ensure that policies and procedures concerning food safety are being followed.

  (2) Certification by a food safety examination. To be certified, a food manager shall pass a department-approved Internet examination or an accredited ANSI-CFP Program on-site examination. A state-approved examination for issuance or renewal of a food manager certificate must test an applicant on the food allergen awareness information described by Texas Health and Safety Code §437.027(b).

  (3) Certificate reciprocity. A certificate issued to an individual who successfully completes a department-approved examination shall be accepted as meeting the training and examination requirements under Texas Health and Safety Code, §438.046(b).

  (4) Certificate availability. The original food manager certificate shall be posted in a location in the food establishment that is conspicuous to consumers.

(d) On-site examination. ANSI-CFP Program accredited food safety certification examinations shall be the only department-approved paper and computer-based examinations.

(e) Internet examinations. A department-approved examination utilizing the Internet for delivery shall meet the examination criteria outlined in this section.

(f) Responsibilities for Internet examination providers.

  (1) Compliance with food manager laws and rules. Internet examination providers are responsible for compliance with food manager laws and rules applicable to Internet examinations in this section.

  (2) Examination Security Agreement. Internet examination providers shall submit the department security agreement signed by the certified food manager Internet examination provider licensee.

  (3) Examination security. Candidates taking Internet examinations shall be advised on the application that outside training materials or assistance shall not be used during administration of the examination and that appropriate measures shall be taken to assure that the examination is not compromised.

(g) Internet examination development. Internet examination development shall meet the criteria established by the CFP Standards for Accreditation of Food Manager Certification Programs, §4.0, Food Safety Certification Examination Development, as amended with the exception of the proctor requirement at §4.14.


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