Texas Food Safety Training Resources
The following Texas Food Safety Resources provide food service employees with up-to-date information on food safety. The links cover topics such as: food safety services, prevention of foodborne illness, basics of microorganisms, how to keep clean and sanitary food environemnt, process for foodborne illness prevention, and food safety programs.
- Texas Mobile Vendors
Texas Food Safety Resources
Texas Code requirements for Food Handlers and Certified Food Managers:
- Texas Food Establishments Rules (TFER) – Chapter 228
- Texas Food Establishment Rules (TFER) – Chapter 228.33 (Management and Personnel)
- Summary of Texas Food Establishment Rules (TFER) – Chapter 228 (PDF)
- On October 11, 2015 the new Texas Food Establishment Rules (TFER) went into effect. Some of the new significant changes in the TFER include:
- A new statewide mandate that all food employees successfully complete a food handler training course within 60 days of employment. This food handler requirement began on Sept. 1, 2016.
- Added requirements for the “original” certified food protection manager certificate being posted conspicuous to the customer’s location.
- Added requirement for food handler certificates to be located on site.
- Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS)
- Texas Administrative Code – Title 25: Health Services – Chapter 229: Food and Drug – Subchapter K: Texas Food Establishments – Section 229.176: Certification of Food Managers
- Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 437 – Regulation Of Food Service Establishments, Retail Food Stores, Mobile Food Units, And Roadside Food Vendors
Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS)
Environmental and Consumer Safety Section
Food Establishments Group
1100 West 49th Street
Austin, TX 78757
Phone: (512) 834-6753
Austin Public Health
The Austin Department of Public Health ensures food safety for all food establishments. There are requirements for food handlers and managers, and four separate food programs, each with a specific focus.
Austin City Code: Food Code (Chapter 10-3)
- Food Handler Requirements
An employee who who prepares or handles food must complete a Food Handler training course (classroom or online) accredited either through the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) or the State of Texas.
Establishments are responsible for ensuring employees undergo training at the proper intervals and are required to maintain a record of the training for each employee at the establishment.
Food handlers are no longer required to register course completion with the City of Austin.
- Food Manager Certification Requirements
All food establishments are required to have at least one employee with a Food Manager Certification. The food manager certificate must be posted in prominent location at the establishment.
In the City of Austin, Food Managers must register their certificate with the department. To register your certificate, you will need to submit the following:
- A Food Manager Registration Application (with fee)
- A Food Managers Certificate (copy)
- A driver's license or government photo ID (copy)
Travis County: As of February 16, 2016, these Certified Food Manager and Certified Food Handler regulations are required.
- Fixed Food Establishments
This program ensures the food safety of non-mobile food establishments such as restaurants, warehouses, and convenience stores.
- Mobile Food Vendors
This program ensures the food safety of mobile food establishments such as food trailers, motor vehicles, pushcarts, and kiosks.
- For vending machines, click here.
- Farmers’ Markets
This program ensures the food safety for food booths participating in farmers’ market.
- Temporary Food Events
This program ensures the food safety of all temporary event booths that serve serving food or beverages.
Major cities and counties served: Abilene, Amarillo, Arlington, Austin, Bastrop, Brownsville, Beaumont, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Denton, De Soto, El Paso, Fort Worth, Gainsville, Garland, Grand Prarie, Irving, Killeen, Houston, Laredo, McAllen, Mesquite, Midland, Mineral Wells, New Braunfels, North Richland Hills, Odessa, Pasadena, Pearland, Plano, Port Aransas, Richardson, Round Rock, San Antonio, San Marcos,Schertz, Tyler, Waco, Wichita Falls – Bell County, Bexar County, Comal County, Hays County, Harris County, San Patricio County, Tarrant County, Travis County, Witchita County, and Williamson County, and many more!
Texas Food Truck and Food Vendor Resources
- Texas Food Safety Code
- City of Austin - Food Carts
- City of Austin – Mobile Food Establishments
- City of Bay City – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of Boerne – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of Bryan – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of Carrollton – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of College Station – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of Dallas – Mobile Food Vending
- City of Denton – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of El Paso - Food Inspections/Mobile Food Vendor
- City of Fort Worth – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of Galveston – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of Georgetown – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of Houston – Mobile Food Units
- City of Midland – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of New Braunfels – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of Plano – Mobile Food Vending
- City of Richardson – Mobile Food Vendors
- City of San Antonio – Mobile Food Vending
- City of San Antonio - Food Truck Finder
- City of San Antonio - Food Truck Association
- City of San Antonio - Downtown Food Trucks – Facebook
- City of San Antonio - Boardwalk on Bulverde – Food Trucks
- City of San Marcos – Mobile Food Vending
- City of Sugar Land – Temporary Food Guidelines
- City of Waco – Mobile Food Vendors
- Food Truck Championship of Texas – Graham Texas
Austin Mobile Food Vendor Rules
For food safety at all food establishments that are mobile in nature, such as food trailers, motor vehicles, pushcarts, and kiosks.
- Autin Mobile Food Vendor Program
- Permit to Operate: This approval is required to complete the permitting process. Once approved, the owner will receive a physical permit and permission to operate a Mobile Food Unit.
- Texas Administrative Code: Mobile Food Units (§228.221)
- Austin City Code: Food Code (Chapter 10-3)
Government Food Safety Resources
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry/US Dept of Health and Human Services (ATSDR)
CFSAN: Center for Food Safety & Applied Nutrition, FDA (Seafood, Fruits, Vegetables, Shell Eggs, and all other Non-Meat Foods)
Product Recalls, Alerts, and Warnings
Foodsafety.gov - The Gateway to Government Food Safety Information
National Agricultural Library USDA/FDA Foodborne Illness
National Association of State Departments of Agriculture
National Organic Program (AMS/USDA)
Partnership for Food Safety Education
Recalls.gov: Online Resource for Federal Recalls (Federal and Industry Initiated Recalls) Recalls.gov
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Division of Bacterial and Mycotic Diseases, Food Safety Initiative
Agents, Diseases, & Other Threats
Food Safety Activities
News and Media Relations
U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Directory of State and Local Officials
U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point Database
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS)
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
USDA/FDA Foodborne Illness Education Information Center
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Association of Food and Drug Officials Food Protection and Defense Committee
Auburn University Detection & Food Safety Center
Centers for Disease Control Emergency Preparedness and Response
FDA CFSAN Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) and Bioterrorism
Food Marketing Institute Food Safety & Security
National Center for Food Safety & Technology, Illinois Institute of Technology
Purdue Agriculture Research Programs
Rutgers University Food Science and Safety Training and Environment and Public Health Program
University of Georgia Center for Food Safety
University of Minnesota Center for Infectious Disease Research & Policy
USDA Homeland Security
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Retail Food Safety Resources
American Culinary Federation
American National Standards Institute
On June 17, 2002, ANSI implemented the ANSI-Conference for Food Protection (CFP) accreditation program. ANSI and the Conference for Food Protection entered into a cooperative agreement to accredit organizations involved in the certification of food protection managers. This new program is based on the Conference for Food Protection Accreditation Standards.
Canadian Council of Grocery Distributors
CIES Food Business Forum Global Food Safety Initiative
Dietary Managers Association
FDA Food Code
Food Distributors International
Foodservice Consultants Society International (FCSI)
FoodService Packaging Association
Foodborne Illness Educational Materials Database
Foodsafe Listserve/HACCP Training Programs and Resources Database
The Conference for Food Protection
The Conference for Food Protection is an independent voluntary organization that has identified the essential components of a nationally recognized Food Protection Manager Certification Program and established a mechanism to determine if certification organizations meet these standards.
National Environmental Health Association
International Food Safety Council
National Association for the Specialty Food Trade
National Restaurant Association
International Inflight Food Service Association
National Food Service Management Institute
National Registry of Food Safety Professionals, Inc.
National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation
Food Safety Glossary
- Acid Food - A food that has a natural pH of 4.6 or below.
- Adulterated - Something unneeded has been added to or has grown in the food to contaminate it.
- Bacteria - Bacteria are found in all foods. Most are killed by high temperatures, but some form toxins which may or may not be killed by heat.
- Calibration - the process of standardizing a temperature monitoring instrument to ensure that it will measure within a specific temperature range in which the instrument is designed to operate.
- Chemicals - Chemical food born illnesses are among the most deadly. Chemicals and other “natural” toxins formed in food include agents such as scombrotoxin and ciguatoxin. Store cleaning supplies in a different area away from stored food.
- Control (verb) - To take all necessary actions to ensure and maintain compliance with criteria established in the HACCP Plan.
- Control (noun) - The state wherein correct procedures are being followed and criteria are being met.
- Control Measures - Actions and activities that can be used to prevent or eliminate a food safety hazard or reduce it to an acceptable level.
- Convection Oven - An oven with fans that move the hot air around to give more even heat.
- Corrective Actions - Actions to be taken when the results of monitoring at the CCP indicate a loss of control.
- Critical Control Point (CCP) - A step at which control can be applied and is essential to prevent or eliminate a food safety hazard or reduce it to an acceptable level.
- Critical Limit - A criterion which separates acceptability from unacceptability.
- Cross-contamination - Cross-contamination is when bacteria spread between food, surfaces or equipment.
- Danger Zone - Temperature of food between 41º F (7º C) and 140º F (60º C).
- Detergent - A chemical used to remove grease, dirt and food, such as washing-up liquid.
- Disinfectant - A chemical that kills bacteria. Check that surfaces are clean of grease, dirt and food before you use a disinfectant. Chemicals that kill bacteria are sometimes called germicides, bactericides or biocides.
- Employee - Any person working in or for a food service establishment who engages in food preparation or service, who transports food or Food containers, or who comes in contact with any food utensils or equipment.
- Equipment- All stoves, ranges, hoods, meat blocks, tables, counters, Refrigerators, freezers, sinks, dishwashing machines, steam tables and similar items, other than utensils, used in the operation of a food service establishments.
- Fixed food establishment - A food service establishment which operates at a specific location and is connected to electric utilities, water, and a sewage disposal system.
- Foodbourn Illness - A general term often used to describe any disease or illness caused by eating contaminated food or drink.
- Foodbourn infections - These occur when “enough” of the live bacterial cells that have reproduced in the food, small intestine, or both are consumed. The severity of the infection depends on the virulence of the bacteria, resistance of the victim, and the number of cells that survive digestion.
- Foodbourn intoxications - These result from a poison or toxin produced by reproductive bacterial cells in food or in the human body. Bacterial toxins have varying resistance to heat; some can even survive boiling. Other toxins can be a natural part of the food, for example, certain types of mushrooms.
- Foodbourn Illness Outbreak - The Centers for Disease Control define an outbreak of food born illness as illness that involves two or more persons who eat a common food, with the food confirmed as the source of the illness by a laboratory analysis. The only exception is that a single case of botulism qualifies as an outbreak.
- Food contact surfaces -Surfaces of equipment and utensils with which normally comes in contact, and those surfaces from which food may drain, drip, or splash back onto surfaces normally in contact with Food.
- Food poisoning - An illness that occurs when people eat food that has been contaminated with harmful germs (particularly bacteria and viruses) or toxins (poisonous substances).
- Food Preparation - The manipulation of foods intended for human consumption by such means as washing, slicing, peeling, chipping, shucking, scooping and/or portioning.
- Food Safety Management System (FSMS) - A food safety management system (FSMS) is a network of interrelated elements that combine to ensure that food does not cause adverse human health effects.
- Food Service Establishment - Any facility, where food is prepared and intended for individual portion service, and includes the site at Which individual portions are provided.
- HACCP - A system which identifies, evaluates, and controls hazards which are significant for food safety.
- HACCP Plan - A document prepared in accordance with the principles of HACCP to ensure control of hazards which are significant for food safety in the segment of the food chain under consideration.
- Hazard - A biological, chemical or physical agent or factor with the potential to cause an adverse health effect.
- Hazard Analysis - The process of collecting and evaluating information on hazards and conditions leading to their presence to decide which are significant for food safety and therefore should be addressed in the HACCP plan.
- Kitchenware - All multi-use utensils, other than tableware (such as pots, pans).
- Limited Food Service Establishment - Any establishment with a food operation, so limited by the type and quantity of foods prepared and the equipment utilized, that poses a lesser degree of risk to the public's health, and, for the purpose of fees, requires less time to monitor.
- Monitor - The act of conducting a planned sequence of observations or measurements of control parameters to assess whether a CCP is under control.
- Parasites - These tiny organisms can cause severe illness. Parasites need nutrients from their host to complete their life cycle. They are always associated with raw or undercooked meat and fish, including pork, bear meat and others.
- Pathogen - Any disease producing agent, microorganism or germ.
- Perishable Foods - Any food of such type or in such condition as may spoil; provided, that foods which are in hermetically sealed containers processed by heat or other means to prevent spoilage and properly packaged, dehydrated, dry or powered foods so low in moisture content as to retard development of microorganism are not considered readily perishable.
- Potentially Hazardous Food - Any perishable food that is capable of supporting rapid and progressive growth of infectious or toxigenic microorganisms.
- Salmonella - A group of bacteria that cause typhoid fever and a number of other illnesses, including food poisoning, gastroenteritis and enteric fever from contaminated food products.
- Safe Temperatures - As applies to potentially hazardous foods, means Temperatures of 41 degrees F or below, or 140 degrees F or above.
- Sanitize - Kill germs with chemicals or high heat.
- Sanitizer - A two-in-one product that acts as a detergent and a disinfectant.
- Single-Service Articles - Any cups, containers, closures, plates, straws, place mats, napkins, doilies, spoons, stirrers, paddles, knives, forks, wrapping materials, and all similar articles, which are constructed wholly or in part from paper or paper material, foil, wood, plastic, synthetic or other readily destructible materials, for one time and one person use and then discarded.
- Step - A point, procedure, operation or stage in the food chain including raw materials, from primary production to final consumption.
- Sulfiting agent - A kind of salt used to help keep some foods, including meats, looking fresh.
- Tableware - Multi-use eating and drinking items, including flatware, knives, forks, spoons, glasses, cups, etc.
- Temperature - a critical measurement for ensuring the safety and quality of many food products.
- Trichinosis - A disease caused by eating a parasite, a worm, found in pork that is raw or undercooked. It causes pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
- Utensil - Implements such as pots, pans, ladles or food containers used in the preparation, storage, transportation or serving of food.
- Verification - The application of methods, procedures, and tests, in addition to those used in monitoring to determine compliance with the HACCP plan, and/or whether the HACCP plan needs modification.
- Viruses - Viruses grow or reproduce only on living cells. They are often found in untreated water or sewage-contaminated water, and viruses from human feces on unwashed hands can infect others by passing the virus to food. Normal cooking may lower the risk of illness but may not destroy all viruses.