A degree in food science explores the details of food chemistry, production, development and safety and can lead to a range of careers in manufacturing, research and retail as well as associated health, legislation, engineering and agricultural options
Jobs directly related to your degree include:
- Food technologist
- Nutritional therapist
- Product/process development scientist
- Quality manager
- Regulatory affairs officer
- Scientific laboratory technician
- Technical brewer
Jobs where your degree would be useful include:
Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don't restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here. If you haven't already done so, take a few minutes to answer the Job Match questions to find out what careers would suit you.
Employers value work experience and so if your course does not include an industrial placement try to get some related experience in the holidays. Any kind of role in a food science or food technology setting would develop your skills and allow you to demonstrate your passion for working in the industry.
You can tailor your work experience to the type of role you would like to get. For example, if you want to become a food technologist, quality manager or product developer, look for work and placements in a food manufacturing company or at a retailer. If you would like to choose a nutritional pathway, try to get some experience in a healthcare setting to show your interest in the area.
Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.
Food manufacturers, producers and retailers are large employers, as are food technical service providers and also government departments which develop food policy and enforcement processes.
Food science graduates also work in a range of areas in the land-based sector, which looks at agriculture and animal-related areas as well as fresh produce, food service and retail.
Other companies in industrial and scientific sectors are employers, too. Opportunities are also available in the NHS and private healthcare, particularly for roles such as a nutritional therapist.
Skills for your CV
You will develop a good mix of subject-specific and technical skills, alongside transferable core skills such as analytical and problem-solving skills, as well as an ability to interpret data critically. Practical work helps your communication and team work skills, sharpening your attention to detail and your ability to accurately record results.
Studying food science will also develop your ICT skills through experimental work and in the preparation and production of reports and assignments. Your numerical and statistical awareness will be improved through practical and theoretical work. Doing group or individual projects will give you experience of time management and research skills.
There are many related postgraduate courses that you may choose to take, depending on the career you want to enter. For example, some food science graduates take a postgraduate diploma or Masters in dietetics while others may complete a PhD in nutritional research.
There are also a variety of postgraduate courses in areas such as biomedical science, food safety, environmental management and food quality management.
Some food science graduates complete a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE), or a Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) in Scotland, in order to be able to teach in the area of food science or technology.
What do food science graduates do?
Food science graduates enter a range of professions, including quantity assurance professional, agricultural scientist, laboratory technician and marketing associate professional.
More than 15% of food science graduates are in further study, either full time or part time while working.
|Working and studying||5.7|
|Type of work||Percentage|
|Engineering and building||23.3|
|Technicians and other professionals||17.3|
|Marketing, PR and sales||16|
Find out what other graduates are doing six months after finishing their degrees in What Do Graduates Do?
Graduate destinations data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.