Food Science

Food Science and Technology

About Food Science

A Food Scientists solves problems by applying science to food (biology, chemistry, engineering, mathematics, biochemistry, physics, etc.) to ensure that the food products that reach consumers are both safe and meet quality standards. Students who graduate with a bachelor's degree in food science can work in the areas of product development, quality control, technical sales, production management, veterinary science, as well as other areas such as food law and food packaging. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics expects employment of food scientists to grow 9 percent from 2012 to 2022, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Food scientists should have good job prospects overall.

What degree options exist in Food Science?

Science: This degree program focuses on training students to either go to graduate school in food science or related areas or work in one of the following career paths:

  • Research Scientist
  • Product Development Technologist
  • Food Microbiologist
  • Food Law
  • Processing/Food Engineer
View the curriculum

Processing/Business: This program trains students to be successful in the food industry in the areas of processing and business. These students are trained for the following careers as well as the positions listed under the science option:

  • Food Manufacturing Operations Manager
  • Technical salesman
  • Research Chef
  • Regulatory Affairs
  • Quality Control Technician
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Safety: This program trains students to become experts in food safety, prevention and control of disease, and microbiology. This program also trains students for veterinary school as well as other professional schools. Career options include the following:

  • Veterinarian
  • Food Microbiologist
  • Pre-professional
View the curriculum

Culinology® This program is designed for students who wish to work as a research chef or work in the areas of product development or research and development in the food industry. Career options include the following:

  • Research Chef
  • Product Development Specialist
  • Corporate Executive Chef
  • Culinary Director
View the curriculum

Food Science Minor

A minor in food science is available. Students complete 18 hours of courses in Applied Food Chemistry, Composition and Chemical Reactions of Foods, Microbiology of Foods, Food Preservation Technology, plus other courses from which students can choose.

Transfer Guide

Students may transfer to Mississippi State University from regionally accredited community, junior or senior colleges for any period of enrollment, provided they have earned a 2.0 GPA (as computed by Mississippi State University) on all college courses attempted as well as earned a 2.0 GPA on the 30-hours of core courses. Transfer students should look at the transfer course equivalent guide to determine which courses will transfer.


Internships and/or professional experience prepares students for future careers in Food Science. A significant percentage of employers prefer students with work experience outside of a college environment to students with no experience, according to new data released by the Chronicle of Higher Education. Students should check with the MSU Career Center or the program coordinator for internship opportunities.

Graduate Studies

A student may work toward a Master of Science in Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion with a concentration in Food Science and Technology by selecting courses from Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion and allied areas such as biochemistry, microbiology, animal and dairy sciences, and other disciplines. Faculty, staff members, and facilities of the cooperating departments are utilized. A Bachelor of Science in Food Technology, Food Science, or related areas will be considered to meet the prerequisites for study toward an advanced degree. Students from other disciplines may be required to take leveling courses generally not to exceed 15 semester hours. Learn More


Students may apply for university, college and departmental scholarships through one application. You can find the scholarship application once you logon to myState. Under the banner tab, select Financial Aid and Scholarships. The application is listed as Submit/Revise General Scholarship Application (16/17).

Scholarship deadline is February 15, 2016.


The Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion encourages its students to take advantage of the many experiences offered by the departmental student organizations and teams. Clubs are a great way to develop leadership skills and to learn about the various food industries. Visit the organizations page to find out more.


Program Coordinator: