Certified Food Handler Training

The Food Handler Certification program is an excellent opportunity to learn the safe way to prepare food. Whether you operate a restaurant, take-out, catering, or mobile food premises, or are working directly with high-risk groups such as children and the elderly, this one-day course is designed to meet the needs of your staff and your customers.

Online options - Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care

In addition to Ottawa Public Health's (OPH's) food handler training program, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) has recognized other programs, including an online program called "In Good Hands", and has deemed them be equivalent to the training and certification offered by OPH.  OPH will accept certifications issued by these providers, as well as those issued from any other health unit in Ontario. 

Click here: MOHLTC approved food handler training and certification courses

 Registration process for Ottawa Public Health sessions

  1. Register online: You will need to enter the barcode or program code for the date you wish to attend. Have your credit card number and expiry date ready (Visa or MasterCard). You will need your Family PIN number and Client Barcode. 
  2. In person: Visit a city of Ottawa Client Service Centre. Payments accepted by cash, cheque (made payable to the City of Ottawa), debit or credit card (Visa or MasterCard). Sign-in or create an account through the City of Ottawa Recreation Programs.

As Ottawa Public Health is sensitive to participants' wide range of learning styles, courses can be adapted to ensure accessibility for all prospective students. Please contact us if you have any questions about the course: 613-580-6744 or email us at foodhandlercertifica@ottawa.ca.

In-class - Ottawa Public Health

Ottawa Public Health in Class Course Features

This certificate-based course is designed to meet the content requirements of the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care under the Health Protection and Promotion Act.

Gives participants a strong knowledge of:

  • The Role of the Health Unit and Understanding Foodborne Illness
  • Understanding Bacteria
  • Preventing Foodborne Illness
  • Personal Hygiene, Sanitation, Pest control
  • Emergency Response

***No refreshments or food provided, please bring your own***

West locations

  • 100 Constellation Cres. Jaguar Room, Tuesdays, 8:30 am to 4 pm
  • 101 Centrepointe Dr., Saturdays, 9 am to 4:30 pm
  • 101 Centrepointe Dr., Thursdays, 8:30 am to 4 pm

Central location

  • 110 Laurier Ave., Thursdays, 8:30 am to 4 pm

East location

  • 255 Centrum Blvd., Orleans, Room 340, Wednesdays, 8:30 am to 4 pm
 West locations

100 Constellation Dr. Jaguar Room: Tuesdays, 8:30 am to 4 pm

2020 Dates

Program Code

January 07


January 14  1524973
January 21 1524975
January 28 1524979
February 04 1524983
February 11 1524986
February 18 1524988
February 25 1524990

101 Centrepointe Dr., Council Chambers: Saturday, 9:00 am to 4:30 pm

2020 Dates

Program Code

February 01


 East location

255 Centrum Blvd., Orleans, Room 340: Wednesdays, 8:30 am to 4:00 pm 

2020 Dates

Program Code

February 12


Exam only
Alert: Candidates that would like to challenge the Food Handler Certification Exam must show proof of completion from one of the criteria listed below, within the last year:

2020 Exam Only Sessions




Program Code


January 09 Thursday 3 – 4:30 pm 1525223 Mustang
January 20 Monday 9 – 10:30 am 1525216 Mustang
January 30 Thursday 3 – 4:30 pm 1525225 Mustang
February 10 Monday 9 – 10:30 am 1525217 Mustang
February 27 Thursday 3 – 4:30 pm 1525227 Mustang
March 09 Monday 9 – 10:30 am 1525218 Mustang
March 26 Thursday 3 – 4:30 pm 1525229 Mustang
April 06 Monday 9 – 10:30 am 1525219 Mustang
April 23 Thursday 3 – 4:30 pm 1525230 Mustang
May 04 Monday 9 – 10:30 am 1525220 Mustang
May 28 Thursday 3 – 4:30 pm 1525234 Mustang
June 08 Monday 9 – 10:30 am 1525222 Mustang
June 18 Thursday 3 – 4:30 pm 1525236 Mustang

Ottawa Public Health offers re-certification to any of the following individuals:

  • Those who are currently certified from any Ontario Public Health Unit;
  • Those who are currently certified by an approved course by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care;
  • Those who are currently certified from any Public Health Agency from Canadian provinces and territories

Individuals meeting the above criteria may be eligible to challenge the food handler training exam. Proof of certification is required prior to re-challenging the exam. Individuals who are unable to provide satisfactory proof of certification will not be allowed to challenge the exam.

You have one calendar year from the day of your certification expiry date to re-challenge the exam. For example, if your certification expires on June 14, 2018, you can re-challenge the exam up to June 14, 2019.

If an individual meets the criteria to challenge the food handler training exam, you can attend any of the regularly scheduled Food Handler Certification Exam Only Sessions. Please follow the registration process listed below.

  • OPH One Day Course: $56.10 per person (tax included) - Course exam is included. Please check offered dates.
  • Exam-only sessions: $16.85 (tax included) - Please check offered dates.
  • Re-certification: $16.85 (tax included) - Please check offered dates.
  • Re-issuing of a misplaced certificate: $16.85 (tax included). Email foodhandlercertifica@ottawa.ca. and provide your first and last name and telephone number where you can be reached.
  • Non-Residents Fee: As per City of Ottawa policy, non-residents will be charged an additional 25 % per person.
  • Seniors’ Discount: City of Ottawa residents who are 65 years of age receive the seniors’ discount of 10 per cent.
  • Withdrawals/Credits: - For withdrawals or a credit on your account visit a City of Ottawa Client Service Centre. Please be advisesd, course fees are non refundable and non transferable to other participants.

French Food Handler Certification Schedule

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