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  •  Level 3 Intermediate Food Safety Training

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Frequently Asked Questions:

We have created this page to give you a fair, reasonable and honest explanation of the most often asked questions.
Our aim is to provide you with all the information you need to make a purchasing decision based on the real facts!

Have a look on other provider’s websites. Do they offer the same balanced explanations?

Hopefully you will buy one of our courses after reading this. If not, then we hope we have at least shed some light on what can sometimes be a complex area.

Frequently asked questions

Click on any question to be taken to the answers below.

If you have any further questions or need help, please call the team on 0800 612 6784

Q1. Which level of training is relevant for me?

It really depends on what role you have in the food industry. We have created a quick guide and if you need any more clarification, please just call or send an email and one of the team will help you.

Level 1 - Food Hygiene Certificate
Our course is designed for “front of house” staff, waiters, concession stands, NHS clinical staff, and retail shop workers who handle pre-packed foods.
You will probably be serving food already cooked in a kitchen, you may occasionally have to re-heat food and you will almost certainly be involved in food safety, cleaning, rubbish disposal etc. You will NOT be involved in the preparation or cooking of food from raw.
Our course is very much a “mini Level 2” and provides you all the information you need to serve safe food.
Study Time is approx. 1 hour.

Level 2 - Food Hygiene Certificate
This is very much seen as the industry standard and is for anyone who handles, prepares, cooks and serves food. It is designed for people who actually cook or handle food from chilled, frozen or fresh/raw. It covers all aspects of food safety including bacteria, physical & chemical contamination, personal hygiene, cleaning, pest & waste control, the law.
If in doubt, Level 2 is the course we would strongly recommend as the minimum requirement for anybody working in the food industry.
Study Time is approx. 4 ½ hours.

Level 3 - Food Hygiene Certificate
Also known as Food Hygiene Intermediate Course or Food Hygiene Supervisor training.
You may be a Head Chef, Supervisor, Manager or Business Owner and you are looking to develop your food safety and management knowledge?
Alternatively, you may already hold a Level 2 certificate and are looking to progress both your knowledge and career.
The course covers food safety and bacteria in more detail and provides information on how you manage both the business and your team in vital areas such as the law, controlling bacteria and food threats, physical & chemical contamination, cleaning, pest & waste control, personal hygiene and food safety. It explains the importance of a Food Safety Management System inc. HACCP and how you would implement and manage this within the business. Our course also includes two new and unique chapters which cover: Training Your Team, and also Ethics and the Environment.
This course is strongly recommended for anyone in a management position.
Study Time is approx. 20 - 25 hours.

Q2. Do I need training?

Yes you do.

The law states that you must undertake training that is relevant to your role:

Food handlers must receive appropriate supervision, and be instructed and/or trained in food hygiene, to enable them to handle food safely.
There is no legal requirement to attend a formal training course or get a qualification, although many businesses may want their staff to do so. The necessary skills may also be obtained in other ways, such as through on-the-job training, self-study or relevant prior experience. The operator of the food business is responsible for ensuring this happens.


Q3. Does it have to be accredited training?

This may come as a surprise, and a shock that we would actually state the following!
Your training does not have to be accredited!
We said we would be honest!

An Environmental Health Officer is more interested in ensuring that you have received relevant training, it matches current laws and more importantly you understand the reasons behind food safety and that you are applying food safety practices and methods to your work/role.
An EHO’s role is primarily to ensure that you are preparing, cooking or serving food to the general public in a safe manner and it will not cause injury to a person.

Your training may be in-house, a CPD course or fully accredited.

The important point is that you receive training, understand it and implement it.

Q4. Why use accredited training?

For most businesses, using an external provider is the better route. It is usually less time consuming, less expensive and offers a higher degree of security.

All training providers are duty bound to provide training that is relevant, appropriate and meaningful to the industry. The higher the level of accreditation usually means they have undertaken more rigorous checks and are externally audited to make sure that basically, what they teach is correct.
In fairness, most if not all training providers actually want people to learn and see their role as important in helping to promote safer food.

A certificate is a way of showing that you have taken a test and passed, to demonstrate your understanding.
Yes we do sell on-line accredited courses, and we have a vested interest in saying this, but we still agree that this should be the recommended level of qualification.

With regards to security, all training provider will check current laws and change the course content when they feel it is necessary.

They usually can offer documented evidence of a learner, date exam passed, percentage mark etc. (Check to make sure your provider can do this).

If you organise internal un-accredited training, you will need to spend time checking through current legislation. It can be better to leave this to a training provider.

As additional learning updates are required, we email all our existing and previous learners if anything changes or we feel the need to update certain methods or practices.
(Again, check to make sure your provider can do this).

Still unsure?
In summary, most people in the industry tend to opt for a course with an accredited certificate. It is the benchmark that people accept and guarantees that you have received the most up to date training.

And don’t take our word for it, last year, just over 70,000 caterers took and successfully completed one of our Level 2 Food Safety courses. (2012).
The launch of our Intermediate Level 3 Supervisor course is designed to provide a more in-depth look at food safety at a managerial level.

Q5. Does it have to be CIEH accredited?

Absolutely not!

CIEH are just one of many UK Awarding Bodies licenced to award qualifications in this sector. Others include RSPH, EDI, Qualifi, and City & Guilds.
Crucially, all are audited by the government regulator, OFQUAL, and must prove course content and procedures meet nationally recognised standards.

In other words they ALL meet the standards and they DO NOT need to be CIEH accredited.

Chapter headings and which chapter comes first, may vary, but the content is basically the same. (Cooking temperatures, fridge/freezer temps, bacterial multiplication, cleaning, pest control etc. cannot change; as these are all set out and must be in-line with current Government guidelines).

Most training providers used to say “matches/follows CIEH” syllabus as this is probably the most well-known brand. However, CIEH are forcing providers to remove any mention of them.
We believe this is a shame and will lead to confusion in the industry, but we must comply with their insistence.

Q6. Is our course CIEH Accredited?

No it is not.

There are two main reasons why we refuse to use CIEH as our accrediting body.

Firstly, CIEH do not offer an on-line Level 3 course, preferring that their learners attend face to face training sessions. We strongly disagree with this insistence and believe it goes against what the market is asking for. Perceptions of on-line training have changed dramatically over the last few years and learners now accept that the quality has improved radically.
Time away from your own business is now seen as a major disadvantage and on-line courses allow learners to study when they want, at a time convenient to themselves and in bite sized learning sections. Learners no longer have to commit to 4 days in a classroom.

The second reason is in regards to cost. A face to face Level 3 course is approximately £280 to £500 per person, depending on which training provider you use. If you consider that our Level 3 course starts from £80 and you can study when you want, the cost savings can be significant.

We use Qualifi which is a nationally recognised accrediting body, regulated by Ofqual and as a result we can offer the permanently low prices we do.

We are committed to driving down the cost of learning to encourage more people to undertake training.

Q7. Will an EHO accept my certificate?

The short answer is yes.

Our course was developed, written and verified by working Environmental Health Officers.
All written content, video footage and final exam questions were checked several times to ensure accuracy.

So long your training meets the required standards recognised by an EHO, (our course meets these standards) and as importantly you can demonstrate proof of learning and that you are implementing this knowledge into your everyday role.
An Environmental Health Officer MUST remain impartial. They cannot favour one training company or product over another.

We appreciate that in the “real world” and after talking to countless caterers, this sometimes does not happen, however, the above point is extremely important and is a worthwhile point of knowledge if faced with this situation.

Our course, because of the steps we have undertaken to satisfy our accrediting body, Qualifi, meets nationally recognised standards that an EHO must recognise.

The important point as we mentioned earlier is that an EHO’s role is to ensure that you are preparing, cooking or serving food to the general public in a safe manner and it will not cause injury to a person.

Q8. Is this a Basic Food Hygiene certificate?

A short answer is NO.

If you have an old Basic Food Hygiene Certificate and are looking to update your training and certification, you should be taking the Level 2 Food Handler course. www.saferfoodhandler.co.uk

This course is what used to be called Intermediate Food Hygiene and is designed for Head Chefs, Supervisors or Managers who will usually be in a management position or at least be responsible for a number of staff. In today’s terminology, it is an Intermediate, Level 3 Award in Food Safety for Supervisors.

Q9. Do we print & post you a certificate?

Yes, we do print & post certificates.

On passing the exam you will be able to download your certificate as a PDF document. We will also be producing your official certificate with hologram and getting it in the post to you so that you only need the downloadable PDF for backup in case you lose or damage your original.

Certificates are sent out several time each week ensuring you get your official level 3 pass certificate to display in your premises.

Q10. If I pay more money, do I get better training?

No, this does not necessarily go together.

We pioneered the low cost model combining low purchase price with a high quality video learning experience filmed in kitchens.

A comment made to us on a regular basis is:
“because of the price, I thought I would get an inferior product and actually, it’s very good”!!!
(We like to think this is a compliment).

What you should look at before buying a course is the quality of the content, (most have a demo chapter), what it covers and the level of accreditation it has.

We strongly suggest you compare all the main training providers.
1 - What is the cost?
2 - What is the demo like?
3 - What is their level of accreditation?
4 - What level of support do you get while you learn?

Q11. Which is better, face to face or on-line?

It purely depends on the individual and the views of the business. Both have very good points.

As a training provider we offer both options.

However, in our OWN opinion we believe on-line is the better choice.

An important factor in choosing training is often cost and time commitment.

Face to face is more expensive as they have to cover a trainers wage and the room hire.

On-line Level 3 courses starting at £80 for example, often mean that a caterer will be encouraged to undertake training where before, time out of the business and high costs have been a major barrier. Our pricing structure allows more people to study to an even higher level than they may have done previously.
We also believe on-line offers more flexibility.

A learner can choose when THEY want to study.
It may be in the evening, at the weekend, when there is a slow day. The choice is their own.

You can study in one go or for example in 30 minute bite sized chunks.
Again, it is the learner’s choice. They are not tied to an exact date to attend a face to face course.

With all on-line products, as long as you have internet access, you can study from anywhere in the world. 24/7.

Business Benefits of On-Line Training
From a business perspective, you don’t have to arrange 4 day long classroom training which is usually more expensive and has the extra hidden cost of additional staff cover whilst someone attends a course.

Many businesses let staff come in a few hours later or go home earlier so they can spend time studying whilst at quiet times in the day. Again, the flexibility allows you to decide when and where.

From a business perspective, most on-line systems will also allow you some type of back-end monitoring. (Ask the provider what they can offer).

As a company, we have received a lot of positive feedback about our back-end!
For the larger groups it allows them to track learners across the country.
A large customer of ours with over 7000 outlets stated that with a paper based manual system it was practically impossible to keep a track on their staff and compliance levels.
Now all their information is immediately available in their own dedicated on-line area.

Our own system even allows you to monitor an individual’s progress, time spent on the course, % pass mark, which questions they answered incorrectly, number of attempts at the test.
It will also identify a learner who may be struggling and has repeatedly attempted the test and is still failing. At this stage we will usually contact the learner to see what help maybe required.
In some cases, (under 1%) a learner may benefit from face to face training and we will always suggest this where relevant.

You can also assign codes yourself and store a copy of everyone's certificate. It’s a great system and many of our customers use it extensively to monitor compliance within their businesses.

Q12. Why should I buy your product?

As a company our mission has always been to deliver the highest quality accredited training at the lowest possible cost.

This is the main reason why we have been extremely successful in developing strong relationships within the major foodservice groups.

We set out to offer a fully Accredited Award at the highest level backed up with a quality product that has received many plaudits for its quality and design.

We genuinely believe we have the best quality on-line products on the market at the lowest price, with the best management monitoring tools.

We are committed to permanently maintaining a low price position, and always will do so.

“Simply stunning value, 80% less than the price of our previous supplier, well done”
Gary Wilson (Director) Campbell Wilson Ltd - Specialist TV & Film Location Catering

“Many thanks, your online food hygiene course is brilliant, I will definitely be recommending it to my registered childminder colleagues who all have to renew this”
Susan Smith - Sue's Childminding