ServSafe Allergens: Online Food Allergen Training Course

This is really exciting news. The National Restaurant Association [NRA] in partnership with Food Allergy Research & Education [FARE] has created an online training course for both front-of-the-house staff (i.e. chefs, line cooks, cooks, dish washers, hourly workers) and back-of-the-house (managers and servers) on how to better understand and accommodate guests with food allergies. (If you don’t know The National Restaurant Association, they are the operator of the ground breaking Massachusetts mandatory food allergen training program that went into effect in 2009.) Here’s more about the ServSafe Allergens program from the FARE website.  Here are some Frequently Asked Questions from the NRA website about the ServSafe Allergens Online Course.

ServSafe Allergens Online is a first: a nationally available, non-mandatory food allergen training course and certificate program from a two nationally recognized leaders in food allergies and food service operations. This program is a potential game-changer for those of us who dine out with dietary restrictions, as it will offer a consistent training module across all states. I have seen a sneak peek of the online course and it contains medically correct information as vetted by FARE.

As the ServSafe Allergens Online Course is a non-mandatory course for food service operators, we, the food allergic community, can help food service operators by letting them know we want them to get trained in serving guest with food allergies. Below is the press release from the NRA. For more information, read the NRA ServSafe site.


National Restaurant Association Partners with Food Allergy Research & Education on New Allergen Awareness Program

(Chicago) The National Restaurant Association today announced the launch of ServSafe Allergens Online Course, a new online training course from the creators of the highly regarded ServSafe food safety program designed to help restaurants address food allergens. The education tool was developed in partnership with Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE), the nation’s leading food allergy nonprofit organization.

"The National Restaurant Association has been working diligently over the years to responsibly address the issue of food safety in restaurants, including food allergens," said William Weichelt, Director of ServSafe for the National Restaurant Association. "We are excited to partner with FARE on ServSafe Allergens to educate our restaurants and their employees, helping our members accommodate their guests' food allergies or other dietary requirements."

Weichelt added, "As always, we strongly encourage guests to talk to restaurant staff about their food allergies, and discuss concerns and alternatives to make their dining experience safe and enjoyable."

“Food allergies are a potentially life-threatening disease affecting up to 15 million Americans,” said John L. Lehr, CEO of FARE. “We are proud to partner with the National Restaurant Association to launch this critical training program that will help restaurant personnel better understand the needs and safety precautions required when serving guests with food allergies. Ultimately, this program will help ensure a safer, more enjoyable dining experience for individuals and families who are managing food allergies.”

The ServSafe Allergens course is designed to help both front-of-the-house staff and back-of-the-house operations better understand how to accommodate the growing number of guests with food allergies.

The course is part of the Association’s ServSafe Program of comprehensive education materials created to develop a strong, skilled industry workforce. Through the ServSafe Food Safety program, the National Restaurant Association is the leading source of food safety training and certification for restaurant and foodservice industry professionals for nearly 40 years. To date, more than 5 million ServSafe certifications have been issued.

Visit to learn more about the program, and watch a video overview. For resources on dining out with food allergies, visit FARE’s website


Unknown said…
This really is great news! Restaurants have come a long way in serving diners with food allergies in the past decade, but there is still more to do. Thank you fro sharing info about this program.

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