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Subject : Food Safety (MSc)

Course Duration: 2 years
Course Period : September 2006 - July 2008
Tuition Fee : € 13,820 (composite fee) + € 1,815 (research fee)
Location: Wageningen, Netherlands

All over the world, people are becoming more aware of food safety. Highly skilled handling and application of technical expertise have become essential in the food industry. There is an increasing demand for managers with expertise in food safety evaluation who are able to survey and monitor the chemical, microbiological and physical parameters for product composition and product safety. Food safety experts are able to under stand and analyse the variation in quality and safety of products and assess the potential risks involved in the adoption of new production methods and processing techniques. Food safety evaluation concerns food constituents, agrochemicals, environmental contaminants and natural toxins.

This programme focuses on the risks involved in foods. The main fields of interest are food microbiology and food toxicology; other courses deal with nutrition or regulatory aspects such as epidemiology and food safety management. Food microbiology covers topics such as bacterial toxins, mycotoxins and phycotoxins, their presence and mechanisms of toxic action, detoxification mechanisms, bacterial virulence mechanisms and host responses. This includes the interference of pathogen-host interaction with food components. Food toxicology focuses on topics such as the effect of processing (e.g. heating) on food safety, routes of contamination of the food chain, preservation and processing, genetic modification, novel food toxicology, use of functional ingredients (functional foods), formation of Maillard products, heterocyclic amines, PAK’s, and oxidation products. Special attention is also paid to natural toxins in food plants and animals, cancer modulating substances, mycotoxins, and all groups of contaminants such as pesticides, persistent organic pollutants (POP’s), metals, packaging materials, hormones and animal drug residues. Microbiological and toxicological risk assessment, including genetic polymorphisms for detoxification in humans, is another important part of the programme. Mathematical and statistical methods are used to analyse risks and design models that predict risks.

The programme is tailor-made and thesis-oriented. Several university groups participate in this programme. Students can major in fields such as food microbiology, food toxicology, epidemiology and nutrition. In addition to a research project, students are also required to complete an internship at a company or research institute. This study programme is designed to prepare graduates for a career as a food safety manager, researcher or policy maker. Graduates can find jobs in the food and retail industry, at research institutes and public organisations or with food safety authorities in Europe or elsewhere.

Admission Requirements:
in agriculture, food or health sciences, or related fields.
TOEFL Score of 575 or IELTS 6.5