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New Illinois Law Requires that Food Handlers Receive ANSI-Accredited Certificate

Under an amendment to the Illinois Food Handling Regulation Enforcement Act which passed this week, training providers issuing personnel certificates to food safety handlers in the state of Illinois must be accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) under the ANSI Certificate Accreditation Program (ANSI-CAP). The new requirement, which applies to all businesses primarily engaged in the sale of food for immediate consumption, such as restaurants and nursing homes, licensed day care facilities, hospitals, schools, and long-term care facilities, is expected to improve public health and strengthen food safety measures statewide.

Beginning July 1, 2014, food handlers in Illinois who do not hold a food service sanitation manager certificate must receive training in basic food safety handling principles from ANSI-accredited training providers that meet the American National Standard (ANS) ASTM E2659-09, Standard Practice for Certificate Programs, within thirty days of employment and must renew this training every three years. Proof than an individual has received the required training must be shown upon request from local and state health department inspectors. Individuals who receive such training may switch food service employers without being required to retake their training.

"Ensuring that consumers can trust the quality and safety of the food they buy and eat is of paramount importance," said Lane Hallenbeck, ANSI vice president of accreditation services. "ANSI accreditation assures the consistency and integrity of credentials of all sorts, including those associated with the food safety handling training required by the state of Illinois."

Launched in 2009, ANSI-CAP accredits organizations that issue education and training certificates to the U.S. workforce. The program is the first of its kind to offer a formal, third-party process for review and recognition of quality certificate programs, providing independent attestation that said program meets ASTM E2659-09. ANSI-CAP currently has twenty-three accredited certificate issuers, five full applicants, and twelve preliminary applicants that are identified in the accreditation directory on the ANSI website.

ANSI-CAP accreditation follows the process outlined in the international standard ISO/IEC 17011, General Requirements for Accreditation Bodies Accrediting Conformity Assessment Bodies. This process includes using specially trained assessors to review documents submitted by applicants against defined requirements, conduct on-site assessments, and make recommendations to the ANSI-CAP Accreditation Committee that is responsible for making the accreditation decisions.

More information about ANSI-CAP is available on the program's official website.


Jana Zabinski

Senior Director, Communications & Public Relations


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Beth Goodbaum

Journalist/Communications Specialist


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