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Get a Food Handler Card

If you are a restaurant employee or the operator of a temporary restaurant, you are required to get a food handler card.

Once you obtain a card, it’s valid for three years and is accepted in all counties throughout Oregon. If you have a valid manager training certificate, it’s accepted in lieu of a food handler certificate until it expires. If you have a food handler card issued from another state, it is not valid in Oregon.

How do I get my card?

To obtain your food handler card, you must pass the Food Handler test. A passing grade is 75%.

How can I study for the test?

Before taking the Food Handler’s Certification test, you should study the food handler’s manual, Food Safety: A Self-Training Manual. The manual is available at or from the Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) Foodborne Illness Prevention Program. The DHS site has the manual in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Chinese, Russian and Korean.

Hard copies of the food handler’s manual are available at our office, Public Service Building, 2051 Kaen Rd., third floor in suite 367, Oregon City, or at any local county library.

The manual contains everything you need to know for the food handler’s test. It is designed for self-study and has self-tests to help make sure you are ready to take the test.

Where can I take the test?

You may take the test online at If you pass the online test, you may print out your food handler’s card. You may also take the test in person at our office Monday through Thursday 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Once you pass the test, our staff will issue you a card.

How much does it cost?

It costs $5.00 to take the Food handler test and another $5.00 when you have passed to receive your card.  The total cost is $10.00. They are valid statewide for three years.

Where can I take the Food Manager Certification Course?

In Oregon, food manager certification isn’t required by law. However, a Food Manager Certification Course can provide the information necessary to keep your food facility safe. The Oregon Restaurant Education Foundation offers a course with their SafeServ Seminars. For more information, call 1-800-462-0619. Food Manager Certification satisfies the “Demonstration of Knowledge” and “Person in Charge” requirements of the Oregon Food Code, is valid for 5 years and also satisfies the Food Handler Certification.

“Demonstration of Knowledge” and “Person in Charge” Rules

Oregon State law requires that that restaurants have a designated "Person in Charge" (PIC) on-site during all hours of operation who can provide a "Demonstration of Knowledge" of the Oregon Food Code, including knowledge of food borne disease prevention, application of Hazard Analysis of Critical Control Points and the requirements in the food rule.

The Person in Charge may meet the demonstration of knowledge requirement in one of three ways:

  • Being a certified food protection manager who has successfully passed a test as part of an accredited program recognized by the Oregon Department of Human Services.
  • Correctly answering questions posed by the inspector.
  • Compliance with the rule as exhibited by no critical violations.
  • Compliance with any one of the three criteria will meet the requirement of the rule.

For more information about these rules, visit the State of Oregon’s Foodborne Illness Prevention Program or the Oregon Restaurant Education Foundation.

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