The basic food handlers card is not required in the state of Louisiana. But, there are some interesting laws in which you may still need to be certified, so read on.
But there IS one thing that state of Louisiana does require: at least one person in an establishment has received a Food Manager’s Certificate.
Important: Searching online for food handlers card requirements will lead to multiple sites claiming that one is required and that they have the test for you to take. Most of the websites are incorrect in their information and are trying to get you to pay for something that is not required. Only what we have listed here is required. So please stay aware.
The state of Louisiana believes that if one person in a restaurant is certified as a Food Manager then they will be able to pass their knowledge of food safety on to the other employees in the restaurant.
Note: The certified individual can be either an owner or an employee.
So although you may not be required to receive a food handlers card or a food manager’s certificate, there are a few reasons why you still may want to be certified.
This is where things get a bit confusing, so we have tried to break it down as simply as possible for you.
Louisiana Food Safety Certification
In Louisiana, an establishment MUST post what is called a Food Safety Certificate. This is different than the Food Manager’s Certificate that we explained above and will go into more detail below.
A Food Safety Certificate is a special certification that you apply for and receive after completing and passing an ANSI Food Manager test.
A Food Safety Certification is easily identifiable due to it’s “Gold Seal.”
The state certificate costs $25 (business check, cashier’s check, or money order ONLY) and you can apply for it here.
Note: For the application, you must supply a Food Manager’s certificate (again, covered below)
Other important notes:
- The state certificate expires (5) five years from the date of the exam.
- If you lost your certificate, a duplicate can be ordered for $12.50.
Louisiana Food Manager’s Certificate
As stated above, in order to receive a Food Safety Certification, you must pass a state mandated ANSI Food Manager course.
Generally, the course should take eight (8) hours to complete and will require the passing of an accredited exam that has been administered by a proctor or at a testing center.
Note: Currently, an exam cannot be taken online or “at home” besides through State Food Safety [as of 2/08/19]. Any online exam without an online proctor does not count.
As of 2/08/19 only the following exams will be certified by the Louisiana Department of Health:
- National Registry of Food Safety Professionals
- Above Training (State Food Safety)
The entire list of providers are here. This list contains a list of food safety providers broken down by county.
Note: When and if you decide to apply for the Food Safety Certificate, you will need to know who the Program Sponsor and Instructor/Proctor were for your exam. It is best to write down this information.
If you lose the information though, you may contact the testing company that you certified with from the list above with your name and certification number. ServSafe in particular has a “certificate verification” tool on the website that is very easy to use.
If at anytime you want to confirm that a provider you are talking to is certified by the Louisiana Department of Health, you can call 225-342-7773.
That was a lot, so let’s cover quickly everything we have discussed:
- Only one person per food establishment must have a Food Safety Certification
- In order to receive a Food Safety Certification you must pass a Food Manager’s Course from this list of providers
- After successfully passing the course, you will need to apply for a Food Safety Certification here.
- The certification costs $25 (business check, cashier’s check, or money order ONLY)
- The certification will be valid for five years
Other Requirements That May Be Helpful:
- Good Communication Skills
- Being able to stand long periods of time
- Knowledge of basic food safety
For more information, please contact the Louisiana Department of Health on their website here.