SLEK10261U Chemical and Microbiological Food Safety – an Advanced On-line Course

Volume 2013/2014
Chemical Content - Chemical compounds way to and occurrence in foodstuffs – farm to fork, general toxicology, compound groups of special relevance (natural plant toxins, pesticides, heavy metals, algal- and mycotoxins, persistent organic compounds from industrial activities and the handling of wastes, food additives etc.), methods in risk assessment, risk management and risk communication, international organisations and their roles – FN (WHO, FAO), EU (EFSA and EMEA) and important legislation.
Microbiological Content - Zoonotic diseases of importance to food safety will be investigated with emphasis on how to investigate food products and interpret the results. Particularly attention will be given to molecular typing methods used for outbreak investigations and for tracking of pathogens in the food chain with focus on use, limitations and interpretation of data.
Learning Outcome
The objective of the course is to provide a theoretical introduction into the main subject areas within Food Safety. The emphasis will be on contaminants, natural inherent plant constituents and additives as well as on microbiological entities.

After completing the course, the student should be able to:

Describe the most important chemical contaminants with regard to origin, route into the food chain and main adverse effects.
Describe the most important food additives by classes.
Display an overview of ADME, toxicity testing and risk assessment
Describe the most important microbial contaminants with regard to origin, route into the food chain and main adverse effects
Describe and compare detection and typing methods, their applications and limitations including both traditional and advanced molecular methods
Describe regulations and microbiological criteria in his/her country
Point to improvements of national control systems concerning microbiological safety
Describe global food control and warning systems

Apply theory to calculate simple kinetic parameters and ADI, MRL’s etc. for a compound
Apply existing knowledge of prevalence, symptoms, biological properties of pathogens and combine with knowledge of food production processes to analyze incidences of food borne outbreaks
Communicate knowledge of risks and risk management

Cooperate with other expert groups about toxicity testing, result analysis and risk communication
(1) Scientific and technical articles (to be provides electronically)
(2) Internet based web pages of relevant International Organisations
(3) Course compendia (provided electronically)
The book:

Leon Brimer (2011). Chemical Food Safety. Wallingford, UK (ISBN: 978 1 84593 676 1).
A BSc degree in Natural Science
International Food Legislation and Quality Management (e.g. as in SUND.KU course no. SLEF10232U), basic knowledge in food microbiology, basic chemistry, food technology and skills in quality assurance incl. HACCP assumed.
The course is structured in a number of E-modules each of which contains a number of E-lessons. A key activity is on-line discussions between the students and between students and teachers. Emphasis is also placed on training the students to retrieve and evaluate professionally literature from scientific databases as well as from a number of other sources. A number of materials will, however, also be provided on-line as pre-selected by the teachers, however. In order to facilitate the learning process a number of on-line students self-test will be provided.
The course can be followed from anywhere in the world since it is 100 % internet based with no physical meetings between the participants or the participants and the teachers.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Exam
  • 1
  • Preparation
  • 105
  • Theory exercises
  • 100
  • Total
  • 206
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 10 minutes
Written assignment
The examination is comprised of the following elements:
1) Two marked assignments during the course in the form of short individual credit papers
2) Ten minutes interview on-line performed by using a web camera facilitated connection. The web-cam examination is to ensure that it is the same person who has taken the course, through identification of the student at the examination (in the form of showing a passport or another valid ID). The web-cam examination can be compared to a normal face to face oral examination and will include questions to the assignments the student has handed in during the course along with questions of general understanding of the curriculum. For the web-cam examination the student is responsible for having access to the internet, a functional web-cam and headset, either through the local university or elsewhere.
Exam registration requirements
In order to qualify for participation in the examination, the student must have completed at least 75 % of the E-learning modules.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
More than one internal examiner
Criteria for exam assesment
See learning outcome