Arizona food handlers card and insurance requirements

Arizona food handlers card and insurance requirements

Ashley Henshaw
By Ashley Henshaw
Jan 23, 2024
7 min read

The Arizona Department of Environmental Health recommends that all restaurant and food service employees have an Arizona food handlers card safety certification. Individual counties are permitted to set their own requirements, so this certification could be a mandate depending on where your business is located.

Get more information about opening a restaurant and the AZ food handlers card. Jump ahead to learn:

How do I get a food handlers card in Arizona?

Arizona counties requiring certified food handlers must use a training course that meets the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards. Training courses must cover the following topics:

  • Proper timing and temperature for food preparation
  • Personal hygiene
  • Food contamination prevention
  • Cleaning and sanitizing procedures
  • Cross-contamination, temperature control, housekeeping and maintenance

Food handler courses are available online or through live classroom instruction. Certificates from food handler training programs accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) are accepted in many counties where employees must have a food handler card. Arizona workers in some counties may have to complete a program administered by the local government.

Many ANSI-accredited courses take around two hours to complete. The length of county-administered courses may vary.

Employees must receive an Arizona food handlers card or certificate once they successfully complete their training. Typically, the employer is responsible for keeping a copy on-site for health inspections, but this may vary by county.

Food handler certificates from ANSI-accredited training programs are typically valid for three years. Employees must retake the course to renew their certificate.

However, the renewal requirements for each county may vary, so be sure to inquire with your local health department for more details.

Who needs a food handlers card in Arizona?

In Arizona, food handlers cards aren’t required by state law. However, individual counties can set their own requirements for restaurants and other food service businesses, and some require that all employees who work with food have a food handlers card.

Arizona business owners must check with their county’s health department for specific food handler certification requirements.

Insurance for Arizona restaurants, caterers, cafes and food service

The right Arizona business insurance can help protect against different types of risks you face daily. Many businesses in the state consider a combination of these options:

General liability insurance

General liability insurance can help protect your business if you are held responsible for accidents that cause an injury to someone other than yourself or an employee or property damage.

Food service general liability insurance can also include foodborne illness coverage, which may provide important protections if your customers become sick from eating contaminated food.

Workers’ compensation insurance

Workers’ compensation insurance can help cover medical expenses and lost wages if an employee gets hurt on the job. All employers in Arizona are required to have workers’ comp coverage.

Commercial property insurance

Commercial property insurance can offer important protections for physical business assets, including commercial buildings, equipment, inventory and furniture. This insurance can help cover the costs of repairs or replacements if a covered event damages your business property.

Commercial auto insurance

Commercial auto insurance can help cover costs like medical expenses and property damage if you or an employee is involved in an accident while driving a work vehicle.

The state of Arizona requires all vehicles to have minimum auto coverage of $25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident and $15,000 for property damage.

Food handlers card requirements in Arizona by county

Some examples of counties with Arizona food handler card requirements include:

Maricopa County

All employees who handle food at a Maricopa County business must have a food handler certificate from an ANSI-accredited training program. Maricopa County food service businesses must also have at least one certified food protection manager on staff.

Pinal County

All food employees in Pinal County must become certified food service workers within 30 days of hire. Certificates are accepted from ANSI-accredited food handler training programs. In addition, there must be at least one certified food protection manager on staff.

Yavapai County

In Yavapai County, every employee who handles food or food equipment must have a food worker card issued by the county or an ANSI-accredited food handler training program. At least one certified food safety manager must be on staff at every food service business.

Yuma County

Yuma County requires all food handlers to have a county-issued food handler card. Arizona workers in this county must pass a 25-question true-false test to complete their certification.

How much does an Arizona food handlers card cost?

A food handler training course costs around $10 to $20. Employees are usually responsible for paying this fee, but it’s important to check with your local health department to determine whether employers must cover the cost.

AZ food handlers card reciprocity

According to state law, county-issued food handler certificates must be accepted by any other Arizona county requiring certification through the expiration date.

How NEXT helps support Arizona restaurants and food business owners

NEXT provides tailored Arizona restaurant insurance policies designed for small businesses and self-employed business owners.

It only takes about 10 minutes to get a quote, review your coverage options, choose your policies and download a certificate of insurance.

Our team of licensed insurance advisors is standing by to assist you if you have any questions along the way.

Start a free quote with NEXT.

banner get business insurance in 10
Ashley Henshaw
About the author

Ashley Henshaw was a contributing writer at NEXT. She specializes in small business topics, covering everything from insurance and branding to web hosting and cryptocurrency.

Her work has appeared in The Huffington Post, AOL City's Best, Citysearch, USA Today, The San Francisco Chronicle and Livestrong.

What we cover
Chat with Us

Mon – Fri | 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. CT

© 2024 Next Insurance, Inc. 975 California Ave, Palo Alto, CA 94304, United States
Better Business Bureau
Issuance of coverage is subject to underwriting. Not available in all states. Please see the policy for full terms, conditions and exclusions. Coverage examples are for illustrative purposes only. Your policy documents govern, terms and exclusions apply. Coverage is dependent on actual facts and circumstances giving rise to a claim. Next Insurance, Inc. and/or its affiliates is an insurance agency licensed to sell certain insurance products and may receive compensation from insurance companies for such sales. Policy obligations are the sole responsibility of the issuing insurance company. Refer to Legal Notices section for additional information.

Any starting prices or premiums represented before an actual customer quote are not guaranteed and are representations of existing premiums of active policies as of December 6, 2023. To the extent permitted by law, applicants are individually underwritten, not all applicants may qualify. Individual rates and savings vary and are subject to change. Discounts and savings are available where state laws and regulations allow, and may vary by state. Certain discounts apply to specific coverages only.