This course gives you the skills you need to start a career as a food processing engineer. This is a role much in demand in the food and drink industry, the largest manufacturing sector in the UK.
You learn practical techniques and work with food manufacturers on real projects that prepare you for your career. You also visit factories including • AB World Foods • Burtons Biscuits • KP Snacks • Premier Foods • Thornton's.
The course is designed to be flexible to help you study around your other commitments.
What you study
During the course you gain an overview of engineering principles and key sector issues, giving you a range of knowledge across the food sector. Your learning is based around examples and assessments relevant to the food processing industry.
You undertake a group project to develop a new food product and its processing. This involves working with students from different courses, giving you experience in a multi-disciplinary food processing environment. You explore ethics, sustainability, health and safety and intellectual property rights, as well as business and marketing strategies related to the food industry.
You also study material flow characteristics, which is a core discipline in food processing. Using food materials to illustrate key characteristics, you learn techniques to analyse the rheology and flow of food products through food processing equipment, including understanding the thixotropic behaviour of tomato ketchup.
You then choose two further optional modules, allowing you to focus on your key areas of interest.
The course also gives you the opportunity to take modules on • food • food safety • the management of food production • food processing • food manufacturing techniques • engineering processes.
Level one modules
Level two core modules
Level two optional modules
Choose two from
The course leads to career opportunities in the food and drink sector, where there is a high demand for scientific and technically qualified individuals. Example roles and potential salaries include • engineering manager (£55,000) • maintenance manager (£40,000) • production area controller (£28,000) • project engineer (£40,000) • site engineering manager (£55,000).
The National Centre of Excellence for Food Engineering has extensive contacts with national and multi-national food and drink companies including • Nestle • PepsiCo • Mondelez • Greencore • Premier Foods • Kellogg’s • William Jackson Food Group. The Centre support students to progress to roles with companies in this significant industrial sector.
The Interuniversity Programme in Food Technology (IUPFOOD) focuses on two technological dimensions of prime and crucial importance in food processing and preservation:
These two concerns are directly translated in the focus points of the IUPFOOD programme.
The InterUniversity Programme in Food Technology (IUPFOOD) is jointly organised by KU Leuven and Ghent University (UGent). The programme builds on KU Leuven’s and UGent’s combined expertise in research and education in the field of food technology.
The Master of Science in Food Technology (120 ECTS) consists of four major segments:
In the first year of the Master's programme, students will spend the first semester in Ghent and the second semester in Leuven. The second stage courses of the majors 'Postharvest and Food Preservation Engineering' and 'Food Science and Technology' are taught respectively at KU Leuven and UGent; at both universities, optional courses and thesis research topics are offered.
1. Has profound and detailed scientific knowledge and understanding of the (bio)chemical processes in biological raw materials during postharvest storage and their transformation into food products.
2. Has profound and detailed scientific knowledge and understanding of engineering principles of unit operations and their use in the transformation of raw materials into food products as a basis for qualitative and quantitative design, evaluation and optimization of food process and preservation unit operations.
3. Has profound and detailed scientific knowledge and understanding of ecology, physiology, detection, use and combat microorganisms in food systems.
4. Has profound and detailed scientific knowledge and understanding of (bio)-chemical, physical and microbiological methods for analysis of raw materials and foods including the skills to identify and use such methods in the context of research, process and product design and optimization and food control.
5. Has profound and detailed scientific knowledge in different fields of product technology such as vegetable products, dairy products, meat products, fish products, cereal derived products and fermented products including aspects of product development in relation to consumer behavior.
6. Can critically evaluate the functionality and safety of foods in the context of human health including the relation with raw materials and their processing into foods based on analytical data and scientific literature data.
7. Masters the skills and has acquired the problem solving capacity to analyze problems of food quality and safety along the food chain and to elaborate interdisciplinary and integrated qualitative and quantitative approaches and solutions (including implementation) appreciating the complexity of food systems and the processes used while taking into account technical limitations and socio-economic aspects such as feasibility, risks, and sustainability.
8. Has acquired a broad perspective to problems of food security, related to postharvest and food processing, in low income developing countries.
9. Can investigate and understand interaction with other relevant science domains and integrate them within the context of more advanced ideas and practical applications and problem solving.
10. Can demonstrate critical consideration of and reflection on known and new theories, models or interpretation within the broad field of food technology.
11. Can identify and apply appropriate research methods and techniques to design, plan and execute targeted experiments or simulations independently and critically evaluate and interpret the collected data.
12. Can develop and execute independently original scientific research and/or apply innovative ideas within research environments to create new and/or improved insights and/or solutions for complex (multi)disciplinary research questions respecting the results of other researchers.
13. Can convincingly and professionally communicate personal research, thoughts, ideas, and opinions of proposals, both written and oral, to different actors and stakeholders from peers to a general public.
14. Has acquired project management skills to act independently and in a multidisciplinary team as team member or team leader in international and intercultural settings.
IUPFOOD's objective is to offer a programme that takes the specific needs and approaches of developing countries into account. The IUPFOOD programme prepares graduates for various tasks, including teaching and research. IUPFOOD alumni are mainly active in the following sectors:
Graduates will be equipped with the analytical and communication skills to contribute to humanity’s efforts to achieve and sustain food security during the 21st century.
This programme is not suitable for applicants pursuing a career in food science or food safety/hygiene or related areas. Please read the programme description and ensure you understand the nature of the programme before you apply. Applicants who do not show a clear understanding of the programme will not be accepted.
Food security has become a critically important issue for societies around the globe. Interactions between demographics, changes in diet, trade liberalisation, an increased focus on conservation, technological innovations including GM crops, the impact of climate change and new responses to climate change resource limitations (particularly in terms of energy, water and nutrients) all affect food security.
With such a rapid growth in this area, there is an increasing demand for qualified experts to contribute to policy creation and legislation in food production and the supply chain.
This unique MSc offers students the scope and multidisciplinary approach to address all of these issues, as well as an understanding of the technical, agronomic, environmental, economic and socio-political factors that influence food security.
This programme is run in collaboration with Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC).
Applicants who applied after 12 December 2016 receiving an offer of admission, either unconditional or conditional, may be required to pay a tuition fee deposit. Please see the fees and costs section for more information.
This MSc programme consists of six taught courses over two semesters, and an individual dissertation project of about 12,000 words.
Compulsory courses typically will be:
In consultation with the Programme Director, you will choose from a range of option courses.
The programme typically includes a field trip providing an opportunity to apply some of the principles of food security to real world scenarios. In previous years, the tour has taken place in locations such as Italy, Morocco and Kenya.
Students will be able to:
Graduates of this programme typically go on to work in government and non-governmental agencies as well as international bodies and businesses where they can utilise the invaluable, and highly prized, skills they have acquired on the programme, such as food security assessment.
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