Major in Food & Nutritional Science

Major in Food & Nutritional Science

About the Major

This Major aims to offer an exciting, dynamic, and challenging environment to prepare the students for career opportunities in food and nutritional science. The goals of the programme are to provide the students with: (1) a detailed critical knowledge and understanding of the theoretical and practical aspects of food science and technology and nutrition and their relationship to human health; (2) a critical knowledge and understanding on the relationship between food safety and a wide range of social, legal, technological and environmental factors; (3) a curriculum meeting the requirements for higher degree in MPhil and PhD or the taught Master of Science degrees in the field of Food industry: Management and Marketing, Food Safety and Toxicology and the postgraduate diploma in dietetics.

The mission is to provide a progressive and effective programme that integrates theoretical and experiential learning to better prepare students for the challenges of the workplace. Throughout the curriculum, there is consistent emphasis on experiential learning through laboratory studies, internship training, research-based learning, debate and presentations, designed to enhance the student’s critical thinking, communication and collaboration, tackling of ill-defined problems, development of individual learning objectives and self-evaluation of performance. Internship experiences can be gained in medical centres, schools, industries, government and community setting. Students majoring in this programme are prepared for diverse careers in the food industry, government or private sector food and nutrition agencies, and scientific research laboratories, health-care and fitness facilities, hospitals, nutrition edition and communication enterprises. 

Career Prospects

  • Given Hong Kong’s position as an importer of raw materials, a manufacturer of food products, and a re-exporter of packaged products, plus its close connection with the fast-developing food industry in Mainland China, many graduates secure positions in local and multinational companies, government departments and laboratories;
  • Positions held by graduates include nutritionist, quality assurance officer, research & development officer, health promoter, medical sales assistant, marketing assistant and management trainee;
  • Qualified graduates can pursue research studies leading either to an MPhil or PhD degree, a postgraduate diploma in dietetics (via the HKU SPACE), an MSc in the field of Food Industry: Management and Marketing or an MSc in Food Safety and Toxicology.

Programme Highlights

How to become a professional dietitian?
Currently, there are around 300 professional dietitians in Hong Kong, and the demand for them remains high.

A typical educational path for Hong Kong students to become a professional dietitian:

Employment in public or private hospitals, private clinics, pharmaceutical companies, food laboratories, health related organisations, fitness centres, social services agencies, hotels and catering services etc.

Student Sharing

PHOON Yong Shian Heather
2013 BSc graduate (major in Food & Nutritional Science)
Member of Science Outreach Team 2012-2013
Participant of summer programme at Pembroke-King's College, University of Cambridge, 2012
Exchange study at Australian National University 2011-2012
Science Student Ambassador 2010-2013

"My university life has been academically challenging and colourful. The flexibility of the Food & Nutritional Science Major allowed me to choose courses of personal interest. The curriculum emphasised both theoretical and exciting practical aspects of the discipline, and included courses such as diet and disease, public health nutrition, functional foods and food safety. In my final year project, I employed bioinformatics as a tool to investigate the effects of nutrient-gene interaction. Though it was challenging and demanding, I am glad that I gained hands-on experience in cutting-edge technology and built a close working relationship with my supervisor. The Major has definitely provided me with an excellent foundation for research and a future career in the field.”