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Training for Servers - Smart Serve®

Mandatory Server Training

Server training approved by the AGCO Board is mandatory for all individuals involved in the sale, service, or sampling of liquor, or who are involved in taking orders for liquor from customers.

The following individuals must have successfully completed approved server training as of the time they start work:

  • Manufacturer’s representatives involved in taking orders from customers for the sale of liquor or in providing samples of liquor to customers;
  • Staff at on-site and off-site manufacturer’s retail store that are involved in the sale or sampling of alcohol; and
  • Staff involved in the sale or sampling of beer, cider or wine at authorized grocery stores

The following individuals must successfully complete server training approved by the AGCO Board within 60 days of the start of work:

  • New liquor sales licence holders, including new licence applicants, licence transfer applicants and temporary transfer applicants intending to operate an establishment. In addition to licence holders, all managers, servers of beverage alcohol and security staff employed by the licence holder must hold Smart Serve® certificates.
  • Stadium licensees, their managers, servers and security staff
  • Course marshals and employees dispensing liquor from vending carts on golf courses that hold a Golf Course Endorsement
  • Holders of Caterer's Endorsements and servers and security staff working at catered events

Please Note: As of July 1, 2017, successful completion of a server training course will be required as of the first day of work for these individuals.

Other licensee employees may be subject to mandatory server training where ordered by the AGCO (i.e. disciplinary cases).

Staff are encouraged to carry a copy of their certification card while they are working. AGCO Inspectors may ask for proof of a staff member’s certification at any time.

The Smart Serve® Training Program has been developed by Smart Serve® Ontario, a division of the Hospitality Industry Training Organization of Ontario (HITOO), and approved by the AGCO Board.

Please note that the AGCO still recognizes The Server Intervention Program certification issued prior to May 1995.

What is Smart Serve®?

Smart Serve is a technology-based program for responsible beverage alcohol service.

The Smart Serve® Training Program is available on video or on the Smart Serve® website at For more information about the Smart Serve® Training Program, please contact:

Smart Serve Ontario
5407 Eglinton Avenue West
Unit 105
Toronto, ON M9C 5K6

Tel. 416-695-8737
Toll-Free 1-877-620-6082
Fax 416-695-0684