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How Do I Become a Food Safety Supervisor?

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  • Written By: M. Kayo
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2016
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If you want to become a food safety supervisor, you may need to obtain a bachelor's degree in one of several fields related to food science. A college degree may be required by some employers, but others will take previous industry experience into consideration as well. Food safety supervisors can be trained to work in restaurants, food packing plants, cafeterias, and many other businesses or organizations that process or serve food. Wherever they work, food safety supervisors monitor the work of other employees to ensure that food does not become contaminated.

Educational requirements for those who wish to become a food safety supervisor may include a bachelor's degree in food science, food safety, microbiology, chemistry or other related fields. Some employers may not require a degree and sometimes accept experience or related training in the food safety industry. During your education or training, you will learn about the many different aspects of food preparation, storage, and distribution. Food safety supervisors should also have a firm grasp of and be certified in the Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points (HACCP) food management system. Supervisors may study online for HACCP standards training specific to certain areas of food preparation like fish, juice, fresh-cut produce, meat, and poultry.

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Those who train to become a food safety supervisor may find work in a number of different places, including restaurants, food processing plants, milk production facilities, and school cafeterias. In the food packing and processing industry, food safety supervisors may need to be present on the work floor at all times. In restaurants, the food safety supervisor stays informed of all the latest food regulations and serves as the key source of information in educating wait staff and kitchen personnel on the regulations for proper food handling. In hotels, corporate cafeterias, meatpacking plants, and many other types of food service businesses, those who want to become a food safety supervisor are trained to ensure that the handling, preparation, and serving of food is up to mandatory industry standards.

Future food safety supervisors learn how to monitor employees who may be sick and come in contact with food items. A slight cold might be acceptable for many workplaces but could prove disastrous in a food processing or packing environment. The same is true in restaurants or school cafeterias, where a single person who sneezes or coughs could infect many people through the food he or she is handling. Packaging is another area where food safety supervisors are trained to watch very closely to ensure that packaged food remains sterile and free of contaminants.

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