There are currently more than 34,000 restaurant businesses located throughout Australia, and each one relies on a restaurant manager to oversee day-to-day operations. This includes the implementation of effective food safety protocols designed to protect public health and preserve business reputation.
Are you one of the thousands of restaurant managers employed within the Australian hospitality industry? Read on to discover how you can enhance food safety in your establishment with the help of Food Safety Supervisor training.
Does a Restaurant Manager Need to Know About Food Safety?
Restaurant managers must set an example for others to follow, whether its customer service, waste reduction or food safety.
In the case of food safety, restaurant managers are typically responsible for ensuring that the correct procedures are followed. This requires a deep understanding of food safety legislation and best practices.
FSANZ Standard 3.2.2A
Standard 3.2.2A is part of the Food Standards Code administered by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ). The FSANZ Food Standards Code is strictly enforced throughout the industry and violations can lead to serious consequences.
- Fines: Financial penalties can be imposed in relation to each individual violation, leading to significant financial damage for persistent offenders.
- Temporary closures: If a restaurant fails to address food safety violations, it may be forced to close until local authorities are satisfied that the issues have been resolved.
- Legal action: If violations are deemed to be serious enough, the Department of Health may decide to prosecute the offending business.
- Reputational damage: A restaurant's reputation can suffer irreparable damage if the public becomes aware of a serious food safety violation.
What Are the 3 Food Safety Priorities of a Restaurant Manager?
FSANZ Standard 3.2.2A includes three pillars of compliance that all play a role in determining a restaurant manager’s approach to food safety: Food handling, food safety supervision and record-keeping.
1. Food Handling
Standard 3.2.2A requires all individuals involved in food handling activities to undergo specific training. By ensuring that all Food Handlers are trained, restaurant managers are able to trust that chefs, kitchen hands and serving staff understand the risks associated with improper food handling procedures and are aware of the actions that must be taken to mitigate them.
2. Food Safety Supervision
Another requirement outlined in Standard 3.2.2A is the compulsory appointment of a certified Food Safety Supervisor in all establishments where food is prepared, handled and served to consumers. This role is often fulfilled by the restaurant manager themselves, although they may choose to nominate someone else if appropriate.
If taking on the responsibility themselves, the restaurant manager must be available to proactively monitor food handling activities, identifying improper practices and correcting them before they impact consumer safety.
A restaurant manager can also help the business comply with Standard 3.2.2A by maintaining accurate records. All Category 1 businesses engaged in the preparation of high-risk foods must establish a detailed record-keeping system that can be used to improve traceability and accountability in the aftermath of food safety incidents.
With an adequate record management process in place, restaurants can easily provide the required documentation when requested by Environmental Health Officers (EHO). This proactive approach can help highlight your commitment to transparency and legal compliance.
Does a Restaurant Manager Make a Good Food Safety Supervisor?
To understand a restaurant manager’s suitability for the Food Safety Supervisor role, we must consider their typical responsibilities and existing expertise.
What Are the Key Responsibilities of a Restaurant Manager?
A restaurant manager holds a senior position with the wider team and will often have the authority to make important decisions relating to various aspects of daily operations. Typical duties include:
- Arranging the procurement and pricing of goods.
- Dealing with customer queries and complaints.
- Ensuring facilities comply with food safety regulations (e.g. regularly cleaned and sanitised).
- Hiring, training and supervising colleagues (e.g. kitchen hands and serving staff).
- Maintaining budgets and inventory records.
- Planning menus in consultation with chefs.
- Planning and organising special events and functions.
Many of the skills acquired through the execution of these activities can easily be applied to the Food Safety Supervisor role.
What Expertise Does a Restaurant Manager Need to Be a Food Safety Supervisor?
Restaurant managers are used to taking responsibility for food safety and their career experience often ticks all the boxes for the role of Food Safety Supervisor. Here are five relevant skills they typically possess:
- Communication skills: Being able to communicate with different types of people is a key part of being a manager. A restaurant manager will usually be good at creating positive working relationships with coworkers at all levels, making it easier for them to give direct instructions regarding food safety procedures.
- Knowledge of food safety practices: Most restaurant managers already have an in-depth understanding of food safety practices, including personal hygiene, food handling and storage.
- Management experience: Managing a restaurant requires organisational skills and an attention to detail, both of which can be applied to the supervision of food handling activities.
- Leadership skills: Restaurant managers are used to leading diverse teams. They know how to get the best out of both front-of-house and back-of-house staff, which makes it easier for them to guide colleagues and establish a culture of food safety throughout the workplace.
- Understanding of food safety legislation: Proactive restaurant managers will have an up-to-date knowledge of food safety legislation, enabling them to implement the necessary protocols and ensure compliance with regulations such as Standard 3.2.2A.
Although a restaurant manager’s existing knowledge and skills provide a solid foundation for upholding food safety in their establishment, professional training is still required in order for them to obtain Food Safety Supervisor certification.
What Food Safety Training Does a Restaurant Manager Need?
Given the supervisory role restaurant managers carry out in their workplace, it makes sense for them to undergo Food Safety Supervisor training. Participating in the Food Safety Supervisor course enables restaurant managers to improve the way they carry out key duties, such as:
- Monitoring of food safety procedures.
- Ensuring compliance with food safety legislation.
- Training and supervising food handling staff.
- Developing and implementing a Food Safety Plan based on HACCP principles.
- Taking corrective actions to overcome food safety issues.
- Maintaining accurate records in relation to food safety policies and procedures.
What Do You Learn From the Food Safety Supervisor Course?
Food Safety First delivers a nationally recognised Food Safety Supervisor course that covers various aspects of food safety through interactive lessons, quizzes and assessment activities. The course features a government-approved curriculum featuring the following topics:
- Illness & Onsite Injuries
- Monitoring, Controlling & Correcting Food Safety Hazards
- Food Contamination & High-Risk Groups
- Time & Temperature Control
- Reporting, Investigating & Recording Food Safety Breaches
- Other Types of Contamination
- Cleaning & Sanitising
- Biological Contamination
- Working with Food Safely
- Personal Hygiene & Workplace Behaviour
- Receiving & Storing Food
- Food Safety Programs
- Serving Food Safely
- Identifying Food Safety Hazards
- Maintaining Food Premises
- Hand Washing
- Food Safety Management
- Food Safety Laws & Responsibilities
- Allergen Management
What Units of Competency Are Required to Be a Restaurant Food Safety Supervisor?
Food Safety Supervisor training applies to numerous sectors within the food industry, each of which has specific units of competency associated with it. Restaurant managers are required to complete the hospitality units of competency to become a certified Food Safety Supervisor:
- SITXFSA005 (Use hygienic practices for food safety): Personal hygiene, safe food handling, hygienic food preparation, etc..
- SITXFSA006 (Participate in safe food handling practices): Safe food storage, temperature control, contamination risk management, etc.
Where Does Food Safety Supervisor Training Take Place?
The Food Safety Supervisor course can be completed online from anywhere in Australia. Students have 24/7 access to course content for up to 12 months and no classroom exercises or written tests are required.
The only practical assessment that needs to be completed is the Observer Report. This can be done in the workplace – it involves carrying out physical tasks such as hand washing while under the observation of a colleague. The individual nominated as the observer must submit a written report verifying the satisfactory completion of the activity.
What Do You Get For Completing the Food Safety Supervisor Course?
Once you have successfully completed all elements of the Food Safety Supervisor course, you’ll be awarded a Statement of Attainment outlining the units of competency obtained. This document is valid for five years and can be used as proof of certification if evidence is requested by an Environmental Health Officer.
It’s important to be aware that failing to renew your certification before it expires constitutes a breach of Standard 3.2.2A. Recertification can be achieved by retaking the Food Safety Supervisor course anytime within the five-year window.
It’s Time to Get Certified
Professional food safety training is integral to the successful operation of a restaurant business. Without it, you risk violating legislation; jeopardising consumer health and business reputation in the process.
Bring your company in line with Standard 3.2.2A by enrolling in the Food Safety Supervisor course today! Registration is quick and easy, but please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions.