Vietnamese American Council - Hoi  Viet  My

Health Programs Information and Services at our Agency
Lotus Flower

Food Safety Program and Certification:
The Following information was documented by Santa Clara County Environmental Health as of November 23, 1999

Food Safety is everyone's business. It's important to you, as the operator of a retail food establishment, so your customers will continue to patronize your business. It's important to the public so they will know that dining out is safe. And, it's important to the Santa Clara County Department of Environmental Health because it is our job to work with you to help ensure that all food is safe to eat. A new California law will require that most retail food facilities that handle unpackaged food of any kind employ at least one person who is certified in food safety. Certification in food safety simply means that you or at least one of your employees is required to have basic knowledge of the causes of foodborne illness and its prevention, pass an approved examination, and possess a valid certificate in food safety.

Beginning January 1, 2000, each affected food business - restaurant, market, bakery, mobile food preparation unit, and commissary - will have to meet this new requirement. Failure to have at least one certified owner or employee may result in the loss of your permit to operate. One person cannot satisfy this requirement for more than one facility, although multiple facilities at the same location and under the same ownership will need only one person who is food-safety certified. The certified person must be employed at the business, but need not be present at all times. Certification must be renewed every
three years by passing an approved examination. Facilities that begin operation after January 1, 2000, or lose their certified owner or employee, will have 60 days to comply with the certification requirement. The law also establishes that there are currently five providers of food safety testing and certification.

To obtain the certificate required by the new law applicable on January 1, 2000 and further information, please call the following agencies:

Vietnamese American Council
780 S. First Street, San Jose, CA 95113
Phone: 408 - 518-0759
Web site:
Email: or
Certification: ServSafe®, Experior Assessments™
Languages: English, Vietnamese

Santa Clara County Department of Environmental Health, Consumer Protection Division
PO Box 26070
San Jose CA 95159-6070
Phone: 1-408-299-6060
Fax: 1-408-298-6261
Web site:
Certification: Professional Testing, Inc.
Languages: English, Chinese, Spanish, Vietnamese

Back to VAC Home