Career as a Food Scientist


Summary

Food Scientist research, develop and oversee the production of a range of food products. They study the physical, chemical and biological properties of food and use this knowledge to develop or improve the materials, processes and technologies that go into making foods and beverages. They may also develop packaging, marketing plans and manufacturing processes for these products. They also devise and source ingredients for products, and find the best ways of combining, processing, storing and preserving them to maintain taste and nutritional value. Food scientists usually harbor a keen interest in what they eat, and have strong skills in the sciences. Food scientists apply their knowledge of biology, chemistry and engineering to develop and improve foods. They may alter a food product's nutritional value, flavor, texture or appearance, as well as its packaging and production processes.

Food Scientists study the characteristics and properties of food and devise methods to improve food products. They are usually employed in the food processing industry, government or colleges. Such scientists make use of their core knowledge of sciences like biochemistry, physics, microbiology, biotechnology, and other fields like engineering to develop new concepts and more efficient ways to process, package, store, and deliver foods pertinent to government regulations. While some food scientists involve themselves in basic research which entails exploring new food groups, examining food to ascertain nutritional levels, or looking for replacements for detrimental or objectionable additives, others engage themselves in applied research, searching for ways to improve food quality or inventing methods to eliminate unsafe additives.

In addition, Food Scientists review conventional food processing techniques & methods such as canning, baking, pasteurization, and evaporation and carry out research for improvement strategies. Some enforce proper laws & regulations, and scrutinize food processing industries to make sure that hygiene, cleanliness & safety standards are up to par.

Work Environment

Food Scientist mostly work for food manufacturing organisations and depending on their specific role may work in laboratories, offices or factories. They may be required to work in premises where food and food products are actually kept, which must be clean, sterile and well-lit. They usually work regular hours but may be expected to work longer hours to meet deadlines. They may occasionally be required to run laboratory tests at off-peak times, such as nights or weekends. They may also be required to travel in order to sample produce or to attend conferences.

Entry Level Education

  • Bachelor's Degree at minimum in Food Science, Agricultural Sciences
  • Doctoral Degree for more advanced work.

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