Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificate

Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificate

Your guide to the industry-standard Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificate including sample questions, expiry date, accrediting bodies, price and more.

What is the Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificate?

According to regulation (EC) 852/2004 of the EU Parliament on the Hygiene of Foodstuffs, anyone who comes into contact with food must receive appropriate instruction and training in food hygiene and safety. The Level 2 Food Safety & Hygiene Certificate is an industry-wide qualification used to demonstrate the level of food hygiene knowledge required by law.

For workers

You can include the qualification on your CV which will appeal to prospective employers, as you will be legally covered to work with food immediately.

For employers

It is essential that your business complies with the requirements set out by law in order to avoid fines and possible closure. The Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificate is a standardised way to ensure suitable instruction has been given and also provides a record of the training received, so you can quickly demonstrate compliance.

Most certificates are obtained by sitting a course, be it traditional face-to-face training or online (more on that later), followed by a hygiene quiz, which needs to be passed in order to receive the certificate.





Who needs it?

Naturally, food businesses of all types will benefit from putting their food handlers through the course. Some Level 2 courses are sector-specific, and therefore especially appropriate for job roles in that particular industry. If you own a food business, you can find out more about what food hygiene training your staff need here.

Food Hygiene Certificate Level 2 for Catering is appropriate for:

  • Chefs

  • Waiting staff

  • Kitchen porters

  • Bar staff

  • Cleaners (if they are responsible for cleaning surfaces that food comes into contact with)

Chefs working

Food Hygiene Certificate Level 2 for Manufacturing is appropriate for:

  • Food-handling factory workers

  • Supervisors

  • Employees packing food

  • Artisan producers

  • Those manufacturing food in their own home

Bread manufacturing

Food Hygiene Certificate Level 2 for Retail is appropriate for:

  • Grocery staff

  • Butchers

  • Bakers

  • Cheesemongers

  • Fishmongers

  • Forecourt staff

  • Employees working on speciality counters at supermarkets



The above job roles are just a few examples specific to the food sector but there are many roles where the need for the qualification is not immediately obvious, for example childminders, school dinner ladies and cooks working in army barracks.   


What subjects does the Level 2 Hygiene Certificate cover?

The course is split into modules, each covering a unique aspect of food hygiene in the workplace. Although these vary between the different sector-spefic courses, the modules generally are:

  • An introduction to food safety & hygiene

  • Impact of food-bourne illness

  • Understanding food law

  • Food safety hazards & contamination

  • Food preservation, storage and temperature control

  • Personal hygiene

  • Hygienic premises & equipment



Can I get a Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificate online?

With technological developments in recent years, online training has become an increasingly popular option for food businesses looking to train their staff in food safety.

Undertaking the course online (or e-Learning, as it’s also known) means staff spend less time off-site than for traditional face-to-face training. Often courses can be completed on any device from any location with an internet connection, so staff can go through the course module-by-module at their own pace during a time that suits them.

From a food worker’s perspective, online training is highly accessible, with low-cost single courses available. These can be undertaken by individuals looking to include the qualification on their CV, which will impress prospective employees in the food sector.




Is the course accredited?

Most certificates will be supported by some sort of accrediting body. Some of these include City & Guilds, RoSPA, CIEH, and CPD. There is no one particular body that holds more significance for this type of qualification, all accredited certificates would be considered proof of compliance if inspected by, for example, a food safety officer from the local authority.


Level 2 Food Hygiene Course on iPhone 
Level 2 Food Hygiene CPD Certified

All Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificates from Appetite Learning have been accredited by both CPD and City & Guilds.



How long does the course take to complete?

Appetite Learning’s course takes approximately 2-3 hours to complete, although the course can be done at a pace that suits the learner (time may vary for courses from other providers).

This is very time-efficient compared to traditional face-to-face training from your local authority, which often takes a full day.

A demo of the course can be viewed in the video from our technical partner Virtual College below:





How long is a Level 2 Food Hygiene Certificate valid for?

A food hygiene certificate technically has no expiry date. However, it is considered best practice to undertake a course every three years to refresh and test you or your staff’s knowledge.

Food Hygiene Level 2 sample questions

If you’re not sure what to expect in the quiz element of the course take a look at the example questions below.

  • Which of the following best describes ‘food safety’?

  • Who is responsible for making sure that food businesses comply with food legislation?

  • Pathogens grow best at which temperature?

  • A clean, coloured waterproof dressing is required to cover a cut so that…

  • Which of the following is NOT a recommended way to cool cooked hot food down quickly?

  • You find some packaged food with a ‘use-by’ date of yesterday. What should you do?

  • It is vital to wash your hands after…

  • What does HACCP stand for?

  • If you were going to clean the inside of a fridge what would you do first?

  • Which of the following is a potential chemical hazard that could occur from poor food storage?

chef with ipad

All questions in the final exam are multiple choice and reflect the subjects covered in the main body of the course. The questions in the hygiene exam should be fairly easy to answer if you have paid attention.


How long does a level 2 food hygiene certificate last?

There is no expiry date on a food hygiene certificate but it is considered good practice to re-take the training every 3 years.

How much does it cost?

The price of individual online courses varies, which some vendors charging up to £30 per course. Face-to-face training from your local authority is available at around £68 per course.

Appetite Learning’s Level 2 course costs £15 per course and is available for the catering, manufacturing, drinks manufacturing and retail sectors.

If your business needs to purchase lots of online courses in bulk, it’s worth phoning the vendor directly to discuss possible discounts, as big savings can often be had.


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