Food science focuses on the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of food along the production chain from farm to plate. A food scientist has a role to play in all aspects of the food chain from production to processing, storage and marketing.
What do they do?
Food, the essential fuel of life, is the business of Europe’s largest and most buoyant industry. Featuring regularly in the national media, food issues are often to be found at the centre of topical debates on such areas as human health and disease, global shortages and surpluses, consumer demand, the rights and wrongs of GM, and food quality and nutrition. Its study has a direct impact on the quality and enjoyment of every aspect of our lives.
Food scientists use the laws of science and engineering to produce, process, evaluate, package, and distribute foods. Some work in production or technical management; others check on food standards, laws, and safety. They also may monitor sanitation, water supply, and waste management. Food science is a vast, multi-disciplinary profession.
Food scientists work in the food industry and related sectors where they typically work as microbiologists (investigating food safety and disease), food chemists (developing flavours, or working in food quality assurance), product development managers (developing new foods), or food engineers (developing processes to manufacture safe and nutritious food).
Food science is a broad-based science degree that develops an understanding of the nature of food materials, particularly with respect t food quality and safety. The supply of safe, high quality food for a growing global population represents one of the world’s most pressing challenges.
The food industry is an expanding and diversifying multi-billion euro industry operating in a highly competitive market and must work with the health sector to respond to the challenges of ever-higher consumer expectations. To do so, the sector needs highly qualified graduates with a clear understanding of food, nutrition, health and their interrelationships.
A degree in food science leads to a career in a competitive and rapidly developing industry that is fundamental to all our lives. It is no understatement that as a graduate of food science you will have excellent employment prospects both nationally and internationally.
There is a wealth of exciting and diverse opportunities in areas such as production management, food quality, food safety, new product development and research, nutrition, sales and marketing and processing technology.
Employers range from the major international corporations to small and medium sized enterprises in such areas of the food sector as convenience foods, beverages, baked products, food ingredients, meat and dairy products, and fresh fruit and vegetable production.
The food industry is constantly changing, creating new opportunities and producing exciting careers for its employees. There is need for continuous technical input in order to be able to respond to and anticipate the changing demands of the consumer.