Access to safe food is a universal concern. The industrial processes employed in food production and the globalization of the food chain has exponentially increased the chances of contamination and has created opportunities for emerging pathogens and economically motivated adulteration.
In this article, top 5 universities offering food safety courses will be examined.
This is a public university is Netherlands and one of the leading centers in Food Science and Technology in Europe and the world. The school, also known for specializing in technical disciplines such as toxicology and microbiology, engineering subjects, life sciences and agricultural research, boasts of its food safety programme as the first MSc in Food Safety worldwide. This programme covers the legal, economic, risk management and communication aspects of food safety.
Wageningen University has an academic year which is divided into six periods. In one academic year, students are expected to take sixty credits (ECTS). In periods one, two and five, and these periods consist of six weeks of teaching, accompanied by a week of personal study and a week of exams. In the shorter third and fourth periods, one course is taught full-time and blockwise. Each period ends with an exam. The sixth period consists of eight weeks.
The programme offers three specializations and there are: applied food safety, food law and regulatory affairs, and supply chain safety. The programme is full-time and runs for two years and is completely taught in English. The first year of the programme is entirely made up of courses, while the second-year features individual research thesis and an internship. Some of the university’s food safety courses are available on edx.
The University of Birmingham is a public research university located in Edgbaston, Birmingham, United Kingdom. Based in a vibrant multicultural city, the university boasts of a first reputation in teaching, learning and research, and leading specialists who possess applied knowledge and strong links with the food industry and government authorities.
The university offers Food Safety, Hygiene and Management Masters which provides advanced academic training in food safety and control. The course is particularly suitable for those with relevant food related knowledge including hygiene managers or supervisors already working in the food industry, environmental health officers or food safety officers, food hygiene and management trainers or consultants, and staff in diagnostic or food microbiology laboratories.
The duration of the course is a year for full-time MSc students, two years for part-time MSc students, a year for part-time PG Diploma students, and six months for part-time PG Certificate students. The programme adopts a global view of food safety but employs European legislation and UK systems to present the principles of food control.
Ghent University, Belgium, is ranked fifth place in the Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities in Food Science & Technology. Based in a dazzlingly authentic, open-minded, multicultural environment, the university offers high-quality courses scientific disciplines, each inspired by innovative research.
The university’s Department of Food Technology, Food safety and Health focuses on areas of food technology, food microbiology, nutrition and health, good chemistry, packaging, food safety management and risk assessment. The Department attempts to formulate answers to the challenges related to providing safe food globally, and to reduce food losses through studying the behavior of micro-organisms during transformation and storage of food stuffs. The Department’s research group concentrates on the areas of food spoilage and preservation, foodborne pathogens and detection, microbial toxins, virulence, and toxicity, vegetable processing, and fermentation of food waste streams.
The contents of the university’s Food Safety and Risk Analysis program include food safety in the agri-food chain, food hygiene and microbiological aspects of food safety, chemical aspects of food safety, physical hazards related to food safety, and risk analysis in relation to food safety hazards and human health impact. The duration of the course for full-time students is a year.
According to Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities in Food Science & Technology, Massey University is ranked as one of the top fifty universities worldwide for Food Science & Technology. It also hosts the New Zealand Food Safety Centre with access to the best expertise in food safety. The university guarantees research expertise in food formulation, fish, meat and dairy technology, fruit and vegetable post-harvest storage and processing, additives, and ingredients.
The qualification for application includes a bachelor with honors degree in food science, food technology or food engineering, or equivalent, a bachelor’s degree in science, engineering, technology, or equivalent and completed at least thirty-six months, and a curriculum vitae indicating relevant professional experience in the food or biological products industry.
The Master’s program runs for a duration of eighteen months, and with a Massey Master of Food Safety and Quality, one is expected to possess the potential to lead senior management roles or establish a business as a consultant.
Queen’s University, Belfast is one of the leading universities in the UK and Ireland with a distinctive heritage and history. The university offers world-class education that prepares students for leadership and citizenship globally. It boasts of world-leading academics working tirelessly at the forefront of their disciplines. The Institute for Global Food Security (IGFS) at the university is one of the University’s four Global Research Institutes, which is leading the world in addressing one of the greatest challenges faced, and that is how to ensure food safety.
The university’s Food, Quality, Safety, and Nutrition degree program focuses on the three areas of food production and consumption. Food quality is primarily concerned with food’s ‘fitness of purpose’ in terms of flavor and odor, texture, color, and surface qualities. Food safety evaluates the physical, microbiological, and chemical aspects of food. Nutrition concentrates on the supply of nutrients necessary for body building.
The MSc in Advanced Food Safety is tailored towards students who are seeking to develop a career within the agri-food industry and related sectors. It provides the opportunity to obtain a distinguished internationally recognized qualification from a global leader in the fields of food security and food safety.
The Master’s program runs for a duration of a year for full-time students.