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Food scientist

Food scientists develop and test different foods, making sure they are safe for humans to eat.
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What does a food scientist do?

Food scientists develop and test different foods, making sure they are safe for humans to eat. You would use scientific techniques to:

  • provide accurate nutritional information for food labelling
  • investigate ways to keep food fresh, safe and attractive
  • find ways of producing food more quickly and cheaply
  • test the safety and quality of food
You’ll usually be working indoors with scientific equipment. You’ll need good analytical skills to do this job. 

What do I need to do to become a food scientist?

You’ll need to have an HND or foundation degree in food science or food technology. An undergraduate degree in food science or a related subject is highly desirable.

To get on a food science  higher education course, you usually need at least two A levels, including one (possibly two) science subjects. You also need five GCSEs A-C, including maths, English and science.

Level 3 qualifications in a relevant vocational area may also be accepted (e.g. Diploma in Applied Science) – check with universities.


Related skills

  • Technical ability
  • Problem solving
  • Attention to detail
  • Analytics

Academic route

  • A levels, including one/two science subjects

Vocational route

  • Level 3 qualifications in a relevant vocational area

Related subjects

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Food technology

Essential qualifications

  • HND or foundation degree in food science or a related subject

Desirable qualifications

  • Undergraduate degree in food science or a related subject

Where to find out more


Where could I be working?

You will be working indoors, in a small, medium, or large company.

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0


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