The Safety Assurance for Food Establishments (SAFE) framework is an integrated licensing framework to provide better food safety assurance to consumers.
Under the proposed framework, food establishments that have demonstrated good track record of food safety assurance and/or have in place capabilities and systems to ensure better food safety and hygiene standards will be given recognition.
In view of feedback received from the industry and to allow more time for the industry to prepare for the transition, the SAFE framework will be implemented in 2025. In the meantime, SFA will continue to engage and update the industry in details closer to the date of implementation.
Enquiries on SAFE framework
For enquiries related to the SAFE framework, please refer to our FAQs. Alternatively, you may send your enquiries to www.sfa.gov.sg/feedback.
Training courses for Food Handlers and Supervisory Personnel
To support and complement the SAFE framework ahead of its implementation, SFA has implemented a training framework for food handlers and supervisory personnel. The Food Safety Courses (FSC) are organised into four levels:
Level 1 of the FSC covers basic food safety principles for food handlers. As these food handlers level up and take on greater responsibilities in the kitchen, they can upskill by taking up Level 2 of the FSC, which will equip them with the know-how to conduct food safety checks for their specific work areas.
Level 3 of the FSC will equip Food Hygiene Officers (FHO) with the knowledge to implement food safety pre-requisite programmes and basic principles of HACCP and Food Safety Management System (FSMS). The FHO may then upskill to become an Advanced FHO through Level 4 of the FSC, which will cover the implementation of FSMS and how to conduct broader food safety checks and internal audits.
The breadth and depth of the curriculum increases as attendees progress through the levels. Food handlers and food hygiene officers will be required to complete the relevant courses following the rollout of the SAFE framework.
All food handlers will be required to attend and pass the WSQ Food Safety Course Level 1. WSQ Food Safety Course Level 2 is intended for upskilling of food handlers, who will receive additional training on conducting food safety checks at their specific work areas.
There is no change to the current training requirements for food handlers in retail food establishments. Food handlers in existing non-retail food establishments should start attending the WSQ Food Safety Course Level 1 to meet the requirements by 1 July 2023.
Information on WSQ Food Safety Course Level 1, WSQ Food Safety Course Level 2 and the list of training providers that have been approved by SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) can be found on the SFA website at https://go.gov.sg/info-fh.
Food Hygiene Officers
A Food Hygiene Officer (FHO) is a supervisory personnel who will assist the licensee to put in place, monitor and maintain a proper food safety system. They will conduct regular checks and educate and remind food handlers to adhere to good food safety practices and personal hygiene during food preparation. Currently, the food establishments listed below are required to appoint a FHO for each premises before issuance of licence.
| Type of food establishment
| Type of licence
| Non-Retail Food Establishment
- Food Processing Establishment
| Retail Food Establishment
- Food court
- Housed in two or more adjacent units in private and HDB shophouses; or
- With kitchen area exceeding 16m2
FHOs are required to attend and pass the WSQ Food Safety Course (FSC) Level 3. FHOs (e.g., in retail food establishments) who have passed the former WSQ Conduct Food and Beverage Hygiene Audit Course* or have been previously trained under the FHO course* conducted by Singapore Environment Institute (SEI) will continue to be recognised by SFA. Information WSQ FSC Level 3 can be found on the SFA website at https://www.sfa.gov.sg/food-retail/information-for-food-hygiene-officers/information-for-food-hygiene-officers. *These courses have been replaced by WSQ FSC Level 3.
Advanced Food Hygiene Officers
An Advanced Food Hygiene Officer (FHO) is supervisory personnel who establishes and oversees food safety standards of their food establishment by developing, implementing and managing a Food Safety Management System (FSMS). Advanced FHOs also conduct internal audits of the FSMS and address potential non-compliances with SFA’s regulations. Supervisory personnel who have passed the former WSQ Apply Food Safety Management Systems for Food Service Establishments Course* or WSQ Food Safety Course (FSC) Level 4 can be appointed as an Advanced FHO. For more information, please refer to https://www.sfa.gov.sg/food-retail/food-safety-management-system. *This course has been replaced by WSQ FSC Level 4.
Currently, food establishments with the types of licences listed below are required to appoint supervisory personnel who has passed either WSQ Food Safety Course (FSC) Level 4 or the former WSQ Apply Food Safety Management Systems for Food Service Establishments Course for each premises, to assist the licensee to develop, implement and manage the FSMS for the food establishment. Nevertheless, SFA encourages food establishments to consider designating a supervisory personnel to attain WSQ Food Safety Course (FSC) Level 4 certification so that they can be appointed as an Advanced FHO to raise the level of food safety assurance.
Type of food establishment
Type of licence
Retail Food Establishment
1. Food Caterer
2. Licence with permission to provide catering as an ancillary service (e.g. Canteen with catering, Restaurant with catering)
3. In-house kitchens
Subsidies for the above WSQ courses are available from SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG). Please approach the training providers for more information on course schedule, course fees and subsidies.
About WSQ Food Safety Courses
Launched by SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG), the Workforce Skills Qualification (WSQ) system is the national qualifications system for the food and beverage industry. SFA, together with SSG, have harmonised the training curriculum and assessment for retail and non-retail food businesses, in alignment with the refreshed SSG Skills Framework (SFw).