By: Gwen Lee, Senior Manager, Food Safety Programs, Food Marketing Institute
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Food safety is a very important for the success of the retail food industry and finding the right training program that meets the unique aspects of the grocery industry is no small task for your retail operations. As the program manager for SafeMark®, the only comprehensive food safety training and certification program created BY retailers, FOR retailers, I spend a lot of my time answering questions from trainers in food retail companies who are looking for a training program that checks off all their needs. Luckily for them, SafeMark® is the perfect fit.

SafeMark® has been training food retailers in food safety best practices for nearly 15 years. The training specifically focuses on retail counter operations, equipment and daily operations in food handling. More than 11,000 grocery stores use SafeMark® for manager training and certification and food handler training and tens of thousands of food managers have been certified using SafeMark® program. Impressively, a third of the top 75 food retailers use SafeMark® to train and certify their employees in food safety procedures. When I ask trainers why they choose SafeMark® they are clear—no other food safety training is geared toward the unique features and situations grocery stores face.

Something I also hear a lot from trainers is how much they like the flexibility of SafeMark®. With both classroom and online training options, SafeMark® meets a company’s unique food safety training needs. The program also offer a SafeMark® food protection manager exam and American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accredited certificate program for food handlers.

We’re constantly seeking to improve SafeMark® and this means both updating materials and incorporating the latest and most innovative training methods to promote behavior change. In fact, FDA will release an updated Food Code this year and we know how important it is to stay up-to-date with the latest food safety requirements. That’s why SafeMark® materials will be updated as soon as possible so the curriculum reflects best practices to meet regulatory requirements. In the meantime, all SafeMark® materials are updated to the current 2013 FDA Food Code.

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