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Food Smart Strategies International (FSSI) applies for grants to support our apprenticeship and on-the-job training for those who want a career in the food industry.

Our training also comes with a path to certifications to help our participants be sought after in the food industry.

Taking Notes during a Virtual Meeting

FOOD SAFETY Pre-Apprenticeship/Apprenticeship Career Pathway 

FSSI provides a hybrid education. Classes can be taken

remotely or in-person.

Don't let your distance from a major city stop you for pursuing your dreams.

An innovative pre-/apprenticeship pathway addresses the critical need for compliance with new
safety requirements under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

Funded by a combination of federal, community college1 and private sector sources, this pathway provides training in the life science industry’s high-demand areas of Quality & Regulatory compliance,


Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and more, and also holds promise for the industry’s burgeoning
“cultured meat” segment.

The California Community College Chancellor’s Office’s California Apprenticeship Initiative (CAI) program has awarded over $2.1MM for this pathway program.

Over 50% of food workers are younger, bilingual women who are often burdened with compliance responsibilities, but possess no corresponding authority or training.


This pathway provides the food industry with employees who are adept with food safety and compliance skills and knowledge. Administered by the Food Smart Strategies International, the following programs are offered nationally:

Food Smart Strategies International (FSSI)

Provides the Following Programs Nationally

1. The DAS-Registered Pre-Apprenticeship Program in Food Safety

provides training in Quality & Regulatory Compliance and Food Safety. Pre-apprentices earn community college credits in Food Safety, and Quality & Regulatory compliance, and badges in Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (SSOPs).  


Successful graduates of the Food Safety Pre-Apprenticeship program may advance to:

2. The DAS-Registered Full Apprenticeship Program in Food Safety

provides apprentices with up to 3 years of paid ‘on the job training’ (OJT) while earning food industry certifications and the ASQ Certified Quality Improvement Associate (CQIA) certificate, the foundational Quality certification.


Upon completion, apprentices can understand, implement, and maintain safety standards at food facilities, including writing and implementing actual FSMA plans and receive the FDA Preventive Controls Qualified Individual (PCQI) certification, making them true Food Safety & Compliance Officers

Food Industry Certifications 

FoodSmart Certificates.png

Examples of Partnerships:

We partner with Colleges and Universities in the State of California. There is a WIDE RANGE of schools to choose from. 

If you would like to know the complete list or have questions about a specific school please contact:

Trish Nunez, Coordinator

Here is a course of study example:

For Food Safety Solutions Website


Santiago Canyon College is an award winning student-focused California Community College located in Orange California. Our varied departments and programs are designed to prepare students for employment and transfer to universities.

Two courses that may be of particular interest for those in the food industry are available online. These are offered as 4 week online courses for college credit. They can be taken as stand alone courses or as part of a certificate program.


Bio194 Quality and Regulatory Compliance in Biosciences

This course will cover quality assurance and regulatory compliance for the biosciences industries. Topics will span quality control and Federal Drug Administration (FDA) regulations for the biotechnology, biopharmaceutical, biomedical device and food industries. Theories and application of quality assurance and quality control will be presented and several different quality systems will be discussed such as GMP (good manufacturing practices), ISO9000 (International Standards Organization), Six Sigma and Lean.

Bio196 Food Safety

This course covers the regulatory agencies that oversee and the methodologies prescribed to ensure a safe food supply. The basics of quality assurance and quality improvement as applied to the food industry as well as The Food Safety Modernization Act, hazard analysis critical control points (HACCP), product traceability, food allergens, and food contaminants including microorganisms are presented. Illnesses known to result from ingestion of contaminated foods are



For further information contact:

Denise Foley, Ph.D.
Biotechnology Program Coordinator

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