Major Overview

Are you interested in coming up with new foods and flavors? Have you ever wondered why some foods are healthy while others aren't? You may be interested in a career in Food Science Technology.

Food Scientists know everything about food from growing and packaging to manufacturing, distributing, and eventually eating. Food Science Technology majors take classes in biology, chemistry, human physiology, and nutrition to understand agricultural products processing, food additives, food preparation and packaging, storage and shipment. Students also learn how food relates to human health and safety issues surrounding types of fertilizers and other chemicals.

While students have the option to major in Food Science in general, there is the option to specialize on the production process by studying Food Technology and Processing.

Required Skills

Successful food scientists are detail oriented and enjoy collecting and analyzing data. Some of their tasks may include testing food for nutrition and safety or engineering a new crop, so precision is important. Analytical and critical thinking will allow for advancement in this field. Strong science skills, especially in biology and chemistry, are also necessary.

Unlike many careers in agriculture, a career in Food Science Technology will typically have an average 40-hour workweek. Most graduates find work in laboratories, research offices, and in processing plants, which have typical work hours.

Although it is not necessary, an internship in Food Science Technology would be helpful. This will give you the opportunity to work with an established food scientist and experience gathering and analyzing data. It also allows the opportunity to experience the field and decide if this is the right career path.

Careers

Typically, Food Science majors work in research labs or in processing plants. Many students find themselves working for colleges, universities, and professional schools in their labs. Since this is a wide major, there are many career options available to graduates. You will be equipped with extensive knowledge on the chemical makeup of food and how it relates to human nutrition. This opens the possibility of working for both the public and private sector, testing, creating and processing various types of foods.

Careers in Food Science Technology are growing at a slow, but consistent pace. Graduates with a degree in Food Science Technology have an average starting salary of $42,301 with a mid-career salary of $76,619.

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Major at a Glance

Top statistics for this major

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Yearly Graduations
 1,462
Average Starting Salary
$42,301
Average Mid-Career Salary
$76,619

Example Careers

Here is a small sample of the careers that a degree in Food Science Technology might open up.

Agricultural Sciences Teachers, Postsecondary
Agricultural and Food Science Technicians
Food Scientists and Technologists
Salary data is estimated by College Factual using 2013 data provided by PayScale.
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