food safety for food handlers
teaching food safety

What is a Certified Food Protection Manager?

Whether it is called a Certified Food Protection Manager (CFPM) in the State of Illinois;  or a Food Service Sanitation Manager Certificate (FSSMC) license in the City of Chicago; or a Person-In-Charge (PIC) in the Food & Drug Administration’s food code – the certified manager has to complete an approved eight hour course in food safety and successfully complete a proctored certification exam.    

Who must be certified?

The State of Illinois and the  City of Chicago require at least one supervisory staff member with the certification must be present whenever food is handled or served.

How does a manager become certified?

In the Chicago area, the course can be taken in person at a convenient location along with the proctored exam in one day or two days.  Certified Food Safety programs can be viewed at

The course can also be taken on-line (for example at .  However, the proctored exam must still be taken in person at an approved testing site.  Testing dates and locations in the Chicago area can be viewed at Proof of course completion must be provided before the test can be administered.

Private trainings, for up to 30 managers, can also be arranged by contacting us at or (773) 401-3244  

What is the difference between a certification and a license?

The City of Chicago licenses food safety managers.  This requires a licensing application and fee once the certification process is finished.  The necessary documents are provided after testing. 

The State of Illinois, along with Wisconsin and Indiana, no longer licenses managers.  They require posting of certificate provided by an ANSI-CFP (American National Standards Institute Council on Food Protection) approved testing agency mandated by the FDA (Food & Drug Administration).  This is provided once the course is finished and the exam is successfully completed.    

When does the certification expire? The certification is valid for five years.    There is no longer a renewal process in the State of Illinois or City of Chicago, which was discontinued in 2014.  The course and exam must be taken every five years