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Sustainable Food Systems MSc with a major in Food Science

The ideal Master's programme if you aim to become an expert in sustainable food systems and strive to take on challenges in the entire food chain.

PROGRAMME INFORMATION

Would you like to learn more about sustainable food systems and their opportunities and challenges, and marketing and managing perspectives along the entire food chain? Then this is the programme for you. This comprehensive programme will provide you with a broad knowledge of sustainable food systems; the raw produce through the primary production system, processing, distribution and consumption. 

The 2-year interdisciplinary programme attracts students with a wide range of academic backgrounds from all over the world and is the perfect choice if you would like to broaden your knowledge within this field. The student-centred teaching approach focuses on collaborative learning and effective teamwork. You have the opportunity to choose from a broad selection of courses based on your academic background and future plans. 

After graduation, your Master’s degree in food science will give you the knowledge and skills needed to work in public authorities, companies and organisations in the food industry, food retail, service providing organisations and governmental agencies, both in a national and international setting. The programme also provides you with an optimal base to continue your studies towards a PhD.

FACTS & REQUIREMENTS

Name: The Master's Programme Sustainable Food Systems
Level: Master
Language: English
Programme scope: 2 year, 120 credits
Next start: Autumn semester 2023

Study location: Uppsala
Pace of study: Full-time
Teaching form: Normal teaching

Application code for international students: 81002

Application code for Swedish students: 81001

 

Degree

Master of Science (120 credits) with a major in food science.

Requirements

Admission to the Master’s programme Sustainable Food Systems requires a first-cycle qualification comprising 180 credits and including:

  • specialised studies comprising 90 credits within a single subject (e.g. Economics) within social science, and
  • an independent project or equivalent worth a minimum of 7.5 credits.

Alternatively:

  • specialised studies comprising 90 credits within a single subject (e.g. Biology) within natural science, and
  • an independent project or equivalent worth a minimum of 7.5 credits.

Applicants with the equivalent qualifications obtained by means of a degree from another country, or with the equivalent knowledge obtained in some other way, may also be regarded as fulfilling the specific entry requirements.

This programme is taught in English. The applicant must further have a level of English equivalent to upper secondary school English, called English 6. An applicant with a first-cycle qualification from SLU comprising 180 credits automatically fulfils this requirement. Special rules apply for applicants with qualifications from one of the Nordic countries and some English-speaking countries.

Specific requirements apply for admission to the individual courses included in the programme.

 

Tuition fees for autumn 2023 degree studies: Citizens of countries outside the EU/EEA and Switzerland are required to pay application and tuition fees.
First semester: SEK 62 500 
Total: SEK 250 000

 

There are two admission rounds for this Master's programme. The first admission round is open to all international applicants at www.universityadmissions.se. The last date to apply is 16 January 2023. SLU strongly encourage all international students to apply in this first admission round.

CONTENT

Students with academic backgrounds in the social and/or natural sciences are welcome to take courses included in this multidisciplinary programme.

The courses are taught using a variety of methods. Students work together on case studies, seminars, report writing and oral presentations. Teamwork and student-centred teaching are core components of the programme.

The overall skills and previous experience of the students contribute to a deeper understanding of modern food systems and what is needed for the transition to more sustainable food systems in the future.

The first-year courses provide an overview of sustainable food systems, knowledge about the prerequisites for ongoing and future development, and skills to handle challenges linked to these areas.

The courses address:

  • developing an understanding of the perspectives of circular systems of production, processing and consumption of food;
  • identifying options and challenges related to the development of sustainable and innovative food products, processes and systems;
  • evaluating current and future food products and food systems from a sustainability perspective.

The programme’s elective courses enable students to specialise in various areas. It concludes with an independent (degree) project of either 30 or 60 credits.

Elective courses may be taken at SLU or at other universities. During the autumn semester of the second year, students have the opportunity to participate in an exchange programme.

The programme prepares the students for continued studies or work with food companies, organisations, and authorities.

Programme courses year 1

Prospects and Challenges for Sustainable Food Systems (LV0103) 15 credits, autumn semester

The Prospects and Challenges for Sustainable Food Systems course covers aspects of the entire food chain, including primary production, processing, distribution, consumption and waste management. The course focuses on the efficient use of resources throughout the chain.

Students will gain an in-depth understanding of current food systems and their challenges, analyse production chains from a life-cycle perspective, and evaluate improvement options that can increase sustainability. Students will also identify and assess the potential of lesser used and novel raw materials and foods.

Management Perspectives for Sustainable Food Systems (FÖ0440), 15 credits, autumn semester

The course focuses on sustainable development in management in the biobased industry, the food industry in particular. It is based on an understanding of value production in terms of the triple bottom line – financial, environmental and social dimensions.

The course serves as an introduction to key marketing concepts and theory, perceived customer value with regards to sustainable development, innovation management, stakeholder theory, social practice theory, relationship marketing, networks and corporate social responsibility (CSR) and the equivalent system-related concept of creating shared value (CSV).

The course includes lectures, guest lectures, seminars, exercises and a project, providing students with opportunities to expand epistemological development and vocabulary. In addition, the course helps students develop their analytical skills and evaluative competence.

Project Management for Innovation in Sustainable Food Systems (LV0102) 15 credits, spring semester

This course provides students with an understanding of the concept of innovation. The course explores how to manage innovation within the context of sustainable food systems. Project management and facilitation of innovation projects form a significant part of the course that also includes a deeper understanding of the dynamics of groups and organisations.

The course involves innovation projects where students work in groups and study a sustainable food system. It is possible to collaborate with industry, advisory services, farmers or other organisations within the field. Upon completion of the course, students will have obtained the practical skills and strategic ability for evaluating alternative development paths or scenarios for long-term visions for sustainability.

Consumer Behaviour, Food Choice and Sustainable Food Consumption (FÖ0468) 15 credits, spring term

The course covers in-depth theory in different thematic directions (consumer behaviour, quality experiences, learning, motivation, values and driving factors behind consumer choices and behaviours). Consumer studies of both a qualitative and quantitative nature form a specific theme, and methods for sensory analyses are included.

The course maintains a sustainability perspective throughout and includes an assessment of how new consumer behaviours and sustainable consumption influence those involved in the food value chain. It addresses how interactions in this chain can be altered, for example through new distribution channels, communication methods, processes for shared value creation and new pathways for encounters between producers and consumers.

Elective courses

Elective courses include:

  • Food Waste – Current Situation and Future Opportunities 7.5 credits
  • Sustainable Agri-food Value Chains and Bioeconomy 15 credits
  • Environmental Economics and Management 15 credits
  • Global Food Systems and Food Security, 15 credits
  • Interdisciplinary Practice, 15 credits
  • Food Ethics, 7.5 credits
  • Scientific Methods, Tools and Thesis Writing 15 credits
  • The Process of Research: Qualitative Methods, Data Analysis and Academic Writing, 15 credits
  • Research Methods for People and Environment Studies, 15 credits
  • Qualified Work Placement 2, 7.5 credits
  • Qualified Work Placement 2, 15 credits

Visit the student pages to find out more and read the syllabus.

CAREER

Several opportunities are available for graduates of this programme. These include roles in primary production, the food industry, food retail, service providers, governmental agencies and working with policies in a national as well as an international setting. 

Degree awarded

Degree of Master of Science (120 credits) with a Major in Food Science.

Central Uppsala in summer

Campus Uppsala

Uppsala is Sweden’s fourth largest city, and the hub of SLU’s educational activities. Located just outside of the city centre, SLU’s Uppsala campus is spacious, leafy and picturesque. It is a fitting setting for Sweden’s only agricultural university, and possibly the most research-intensive of all universities. With two universities located in Uppsala, students can enjoy a lively, dynamic and stimulating atmosphere. 


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