NEHA Responds to Industry Demands for Trained Food Safety Professionals
DENVER--- With recent estimates of more than one million retail food establishments in the U.S., food supplies procured across international boundaries, and as the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) moves the nation toward the critically important goal of building an integrated national food safety system, professionals trained in food protection and defense are in high demand. As a result of these changes in the industry, the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) has amped up its training to meet the demands for qualified food safety professionals.
Food safety has been an integral part of the registered environmental health specialist/registered sanitarian (REHS/RS) training and credentialing, offered through NEHA since 1937. Some 3,800 REHS/RS inspect facilities, ensure compliance, conduct investigations, and educate the community. While many organizations are involved in efforts to mitigate effects of foodborne illnesses on public health, outbreak detection, response, control measures, and prevention actions are impacted by budgets and staff capacity to manage both routine inspections and outbreak investigations.
The Certified in Comprehensive Food Safety (CCFS) credential is NEHA’s newest credential, and was instituted largely as a response FSMA to educate food safety professionals in the new regulations of FSMA. Holders of the credential are required to demonstrate expertise in how to assure food is safe for consumers throughout the manufacturing and processing sector.
The Certified Professional – Food Safety (CP-FS) credential is designed for food safety professionals in both the public and private sectors whose primary responsibility is the protection and safety of food products. The course and exam to earn this credential focuses on topics such as food microbiology, regulatory requirements, and hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP). The exam tests a mix of general knowledge and problem solving skills. Currently, there are more than 2,300 CP-FS credential holders across the country.
More information on the training and education required for these and other credentials can be found on NEHA’s website at http://www.neha.org/credential.
In addition to credentials, NEHA offers four certificate programs including the Food Handler, the Food Protection Manager, and HACCP certifications and training for the HACCP Handler and the HACCP Manager in various disciplines such as manufacturing/processing, produce, bottled water and retail food. Details on these programs are provided in the certificate handbook: http://www.nehatraining.org/pdf/NEHA_Certificate_Handbook.pdf.
About the National Environmental Health Association
The National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) is professional society with more than 4,500 members in the public and private sectors as well as in universities and uniformed services. NEHA's mission, "to advance the environmental health and protection professional for the purpose of providing a healthful environment for all" is fulfilled in the products and services offered by NEHA to advance the environmental health professional through credentialing, training, education, networking, professional development, and policy involvement opportunities. Learn more about NEHA at www.neha.org.