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Food Scientist

Position Overview

Food scientists are responsible for ensuring the food manufacturing and production is done safely and maintains the expected quality. Food scientists can also be a part of the manufacturing and development process of recipes, new ingredients and foods, and more. They also work closely with development teams to bring new food items to production or alter existing foods to reduce calories, have fat-free items and so forth. Food scientist can be responsible for creating sample items, experimenting to develop new products, and designing machinery to produce identical products in high quantities. Since food scientists have such an important role in the food manufacturing industry, it is important for them to be up to date with respective legislation.

Food Scientist Duties

Food scientist duties vary based on the company or sector of employment; some typical tasks are listed below:

  • Discovering improved manufacturing methods
  • Develop new food and beverage products
  • Test food products for harmful bacteria, moulds and other hazardous organisms
  • Ensure manufacturing processes abides by all respective industry and government standards
  • Develop low cost production
  • examine food products for their consistency in texture, colour, flavour and nutrition

Typical Employers

  • Food and Beverage Manufacturers
  • Universities
  • Research Associations
  • Government Organisations
  • Regulatory Bodies
  • Farms
  • Food processors
  • Equipment manufacturers
  • Food and agriculture consulting firms

Required Education and Training

A degree in food manufacturing, food science, agricultural science or relation to food/agriculture is a minimum requirement for this field of work. Depending on the specific position you want, you can study biochemistry, food processing, nutrition, microbiology, food safety, and other related programs. To be a professor or a researcher for a university, you may be required to complete a master's degree or PhD. Gaining a master's degree or PhD can also be of benefit for advancement in a specific role, whereas not having one can hinder future career growth.

Key Skills and Qualities

  • A general interest in food science
  • High importance on hygiene and cleanliness in the workplace
  • Problem solving skills
  • Organisation and time management skills
  • Strong communication skills - written and verbal
  • Great attention to detail
  • Critical-thinking skills
  • Excellent analytical skills
  • Observation skills

Average Salary

  • Entry level salaries can range from £20,000 - £26,000 Experienced salaries can range from £30,000 - £45,000
  • Senior level management can earn roughly around £65,000

Average salaries may vary depending on the specific field of work you enter as a food scientist.