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Master of Professional Studies in Food Safety (MProfStuds)

Please note: This programme has been suspended and is no longer accepting applications.

Quick facts
Points per degree 120 points
Full-time study 1 year
Part-time study 2+ years (recommended if working concurrently)
Degree structure Taught and project
Taught at All courses in this programme are delivered only online

Programme highlights

  • Provides skills and training in demand by the food and food production industry, here in New Zealand and overseas.
  • It is developed in consultation with the New Zealand Food Safety Authority and major companies in New Zealand.
  • Flexible delivery: All courses are delivered online, except for the project, which is undertaken at the students own workplace or at the City or Grafton Campus (international locations may be possible, subject to individual approval).
  • Projects are supervised by research staff, but may be related to –or conducted in – the workplace (subject to individual approval).

Programme overview

Food Safety is an area of great importance internationally, as highlighted by recent outbreaks of food borne diseases and food poisoning. It is particularly important to New Zealand because of our agricultural and industry-based food production and export markets.

This programme explains the:

  • Principal contaminants and their control.
  • Science and management of food chains from farmgate to fork.
  • Legislation and regulations which govern good practice.
  • Theoretical and practical basis of food safety.

Students will have the opportunity to undertake practical or investigative work which may be related to their workplace or industry.

This programme is for graduates and practitioners in the field of food science and nutrition/food technology, food process engineering or food production management who are responsible for food safety, in production settings, policy development, or the management of food production chains.

The Master of Professional Studies in Food Safety is taught by the School of Chemical Sciences in conjunction with the School of Medical Sciences and experts from industry and Government Regulatory Organisations.

For more details, please see The University of Auckland Calendar or download the brochure below.


Programme structure

  • 60 points (4 courses) from: FOODSCI 711-714 (courses delivered only online)
  • 15 points from: FOODSCI 715-717 (courses delivered only online)
  • 45 points: 797 project (the location for the project component of this programme is both city and Grafton campus with other locations subject to individual approval)

FOODSCI 711 – 717 are delivered online, of which FOODSCI 711 – 714 are compulsory courses (all are studied) and FOODSCI 715-717 are optional (only one is studied).

Students begin their degree by studying the online courses and would normally complete FOODSCI 797 Project in Food Science in their final semester as approved by the Programme Director. One of the optional online courses may be studied concurrently with the project, though all the compulsory courses must be completed prior to commencing the project. Students who intend to study the degree on a part-time basis should take the compulsory courses sequentially.

Students studying this degree while working fulltime are advised to undertake a maximum of two online courses per semester. Each course requires approximately 10 hours of online interaction and study per week.

The project requires approximately 30 hours of work per week including work at a specific location (for example in a laboratory, or at your workplace), contact with your supervisor (may be via Skype or equivalent), and writing up. Projects can be laboratory-based (usually at the City or Grafton Campus), non-laboratory workplace-based (e.g. designing a food safety protocol) or conducted from any location (e.g. a project on legislation or policy). Students must present their project in Auckland at the end of the semester. Students who wish to undertake their research project at an off-campus location must seek approval from the Programme Director, Professor Conrad Perera, prior to commencing the degree.

Opportunities for students to attend the City Campus for one or two days to undertake optional supplementary study may be offered from time to time.

System requirements for accessing online courses

The online courses are delivered via the University’s e-learning platform called ‘Cecil’.

View the system and browser requirements for Cecil

Students will need frequent (sometimes daily) internet access in order to participate in online discussion and to submit assessment. The minimum recommended internet connection is around 256 kbps download speed and 1-3 GB data allowance per month. If students need to contact staff via skype or equivalent they may need higher capacity.

Entry requirements

Students will require either:

  • a relevant four-year bachelors degree


  • a relevant four-year bachelors (honours) degree


  • a three-year bachelors degree and either a professional qualification equal to one year postgraduate study, or three years relevant work experience.

Entry is with the approval of the Director of the programme.

Students without one of these qualifications may wish to consider the BSc in Food Science and Nutrition.

Find information on how to apply

Career opportunities

Graduates of this programme will be equipped to undertake the development, maintenance or management of food safety in a variety of settings from farmgate to fork.

Opportunities include:

  • Food safety officer
  • Food quality assurance officer
  • Compliance manager
  • Regulatory affairs manager

Graduates of our postgraduate programmes in Food Science are already employed in:

  • Dairy industry
  • Brewing
  • Food Manufacturing Companies
  • Crown Research Institutes
  • Government agencies
  • Multinational food companies

Student feedback


“This is a fantastic course, particularly as it is an online course, as it allows me to study whilst holding down full time employment. It also allows me to network with other like-minded individuals. The course material and subjects match the current situation in New Zealand and I highly recommend it to anyone wanting in-depth knowledge of the New Zealand food industry.”

Philip Taunt, Quality Systems Manager at Tegel Foods Ltd

Help and advice

Professor Conrad Perera
Phone: +64 9 373 7599 ext 83156
Email: c.perera@auckland.ac.nz


International students

Please note that the Master of Professional Studies in Food Safety is currently restricted to New Zealand and Australian citizens/residents.