Course Contents

Chapter 1. Foodborne Illness and Injury

  • Microbial, chemical, and physical hazards and the types of illness or injury they cause.
  • Foodborne disease intoxication vs. infection.
  • Common symptoms of microbial foodborne disease.
  • Populations particularly susceptible to foodborne disease.
  • Food allergies and intolerances.
  • Foods that account for 90% of known food allergenic reactions


Chapter 2. Food Microbiology

  • Pathogenic, spoilage, and beneficial microorganisms.
  • Microbial growth phases.
  • Bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi in food.
  • Why Listeria monocytogenes is not adequately controlled by refrigeration alone.
  • Acid and low-acid foods and the potential for microbial growth.
  • Water activity and microbial growth.
  • Growth behavior of mesophiles, psychrotrophs, and thermophiles.
  • The Temperature Danger Zone (TDZ) concept.
  • Oxygen requirements for microorganisms.


Chapter 3. Food Protection

  • Definition and examples of potentially hazardous foods.
  • Situations in which raw materials, ingredients, or processed food products are exposed to TDZ temperatures.
  • The “First In First Out” system and how it helps to maintain safe food.
  • Storage conditions that prevent food contamination.
  • Safe thawing of frozen foods and ingredients.
  • Preventing post-processing contamination and microbial growth.
  • Hazards associated with reduced oxygen packaging


Chapter 4. Worker Hygiene and Personal Practices That Cause Food Contamination

  • Symptoms and conditions that would exclude a person from working with food.
  • Personal hygienic practices that employees who handle food should follow at home to maintain overall cleanliness on the job.
  • How protective clothing prevents food contamination.
  • The proper way to wear a hair restraint.
  • Personal practices on the job that can contribute to food contamination.
  • Preventing cross-contamination when moving between unsanitary and sanitary food-handling areas.
  • When and how to wash hands correctly.
  • When and wear to use disposable hand gloves.


Chapter 5. Safe Water Use

  • Characteristics and uses of potable water in processing plants.
  • Risks associated with municipal, ground, and surface water.
  • Significance of detecting coliforms in the potable water supply.
  • When water should be tested.
  • Back flow prevention devices and how they work.
  • Situations in which aerosols and floor splash can cause food contamination.
  • Examples of a direct cross connections.
  • Example of indirect cross connections.


Chapter 6. Design and Maintenance of Buildings and Grounds

  • How trees, bushes, and grass outside buildings increase food safety risks.
  • How improper grading of roads, parking lots, and receiving yards causes standing water problems.
  • How the type and placement of interior and exterior light fixtures affects food safety risks.
  • The best path for the movement of raw materials and ingredients through the plant.
  • Minimizing contamination through proper construction of doors, windows, walls, floors, and drains.
  • Maintaining proper air flow to minimize food safety risks.
  • Proper placement of storage and waste containers inside and outside buildings.


Chapter 7. Design, Use, and Maintenance of Equipment and Utensils

  • Definition and examples of a food contact and non-food contact surfaces.
  • Desirable characteristics of materials used as food contact surfaces.
  • Examples of equipment sanitary design principles that minimize food safety risks.
  • How proper placement of equipment minimizes food safety risks.
  • How a preventative maintenance, repair, and calibration programs impact food safety.


Chapter 8. Food Safety Regulations

  • Federal government agencies responsible for food safety regulations.
  • Federal agency that regulates pesticides, sanitizers, and water quality.
  • General rules for determining whether a food is regulated by federal or state and local regulations.
  • Two general conditions that qualify a food as adulterated.
  • The purpose and scope of Good Manufacturing Practices.
  • What to do and what not to do when an inspector arrives at your processing establishment.


Chapter 9. Cleaning as Part of the Sanitization Process

  • The 5 steps for cleaning and sanitizing and the goal of each.
  • Why it is necessary to thoroughly clean a surface before sanitizing it.
  • Properties of select cleaners and the soils they remove.
  • Ideal characteristics to look for when purchasing a cleaner.
  • Manual and mechanical cleaning procedures and which situations to use them.
  • Precautions to take when using high pressure cleaning methods.


Chapter 10. Sanitizers and the Sanitization Process

  • Characteristics of an ideal sanitizer.
  • Advantages and disadvantages of various physical and chemical sanitizing treatments.
  • How pH affects the activity of hypochlorite sanitizers.
  • Strategies for monitoring for pathogens in food or on food contact surfaces.
  • Advantages for using indirect methods over direct methods to verify sanitizing effectiveness.
  • The concept and usefulness of ATP bioluminescence testing.
  • The zone concept for developing a microbiological sampling program.


Chapter 11. Food Defense and Plant Security

  • Recommendations for evaluating food security risks.
  • Types of individuals capable of intentionally contaminating food and possible motivations for each.
  • Critical security areas and why it is important to concentrate control efforts in these areas.
  • Signs that indicate an employee might be a security risk.
  • Examples of ways to limit access to critical interior and exterior security areas.
  • Examples of ways to increase visibility on the grounds and inside food processing and storage buildings.


Chapter 12. Controlling Food Hazards – The HACCP Approach

  • The HACCP concept and why it is more effective in preventing foodborne illness and injury than the traditional inspection system.
  • The purpose of prerequisite programs.
  • Factors that determine whether or not a food safety hazard is significant.
  • Critical control points and monitoring procedures.
  • The importance of record keeping in HACCP.