Food scientists use chemistry, microbiology and other sciences to study food content, safety and processing. They analyse nutritional value and research ways to make foods healthier and more flavourful. Food scientists evaluate data and test results to discover better techniques for food selection, preservation and distribution.
Standard business hours
Food scientists work full time, mostly in the laboratory or office. They may also do fieldwork at farms, greenhouses and processing plants. Some food scientist positions require travel, including international locations.
Visiting food production facilities requires appropriate clothing and following biosecurity protocols. Exposure to loud production machinery and cold temperatures from storage equipment is possible.
Annual salary estimates are based on percentile wage data collected through the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey of US workers.
DVM / VMD degree
Food scientists typically have a bachelor's degree in agricultural science or a related field like chemistry or chemical engineering. You should select applicable coursework such as food analysis, food chemistry and food engineering. Internships and cooperative programmes provide valuable hands-on experience to boost your résumé.
Some food scientists earn advanced degrees to expand their career options. Certifications from organisations like the American Society of Agronomy and the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) can help with your career progression.
Achievement and reliability as a food scientist can lead to larger and more prestigious projects. Earning a master's in toxicology or dietetics can open up more specialised job opportunities. Those with a more general BSc degree may choose to earn their PhD and focus on doing research in the food sciences.
Food scientists may also use their degree to transition into related careers in farming, agricultural inspection and farm-related manufacturing.