Food Safety, Hygiene and Management Postgraduate Certificate

Postgraduate Open Day: Saturday 24 November 2018

Join us on campus to hear first-hand from current students about their experience at Birmingham. Our academics will also be available to discuss the research and programmes you’re interested in, including modules, course structure and suitability in relation to your previous experience. 

Find out more and register

This new version of the postgraduate certificate in Food Safety Hygiene and Management is an accredited course designed for veterinary surgeons working in the UK meat industry who wish to acquire the Higher Certificate in Food Control.

The Higher Certificate in Food Control is the baseline qualification set by the Food Standards Agency for officers who deliver the full range of official food controls and enforcement sanctions.  

This version of the PG Certificate has been accredited by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health as fulfilling the academic part of the Higher Certificate in Food Control. In addition to the academic course, candidates must also complete a logbook and oral exam set by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

Kostas Vassos

Kostas Vassos

MSc Food Safety, Hygiene and Management, 2012

“"I decided to undertake postgraduate studies in the UK because I was seeking a new academic challenge, I wanted to increase my knowledge, professional expertise and skills and also to develop my research skills, and finally I wanted to experience life in a different country at a university abroad."”

The PG Certificate in Food Safety, Hygiene and Management is an existing programme of study that shares the taught elements of the MSc and PG Diploma in Food Safety Hygiene and Management.

The veterinary conversion version of the PG Certificate combines existing modules with two new specialist 10 credit modules to meet the requirements of the Higher Certificate in Food Control.

The course is part time and comprises 60 credits of taught material. Each module is of one week duration. Candidates must therefore attend 6 weeks of formal tuition, plus home study and assessment.  

This programme would be delivered over approximately 8 months of part time study (depending on the option modules selected) and could be completed within one academic year.

Aristeidis and Ernie talk about the Food Safety, Hygiene and Management Masters/MSc course

Related links

Why study this course

If you are a Veterinary Surgeon delivering Official Controls in slaughter houses or cutting plants, this course will help you towards the Higher Certificate in Food Control which will enable you to work in other food premises.

The Food Law Code of Practice (England) issued by the Food Standards Agency in 2015 and updated in March 2017 clarifies the training and qualification requirements for officers who can be authorised for the delivery of official controls (hygiene and standards). 

It sets the baseline qualification for such officers as the Higher Certificate in Food Control and has approved a syllabus that must be followed to acquire this qualification. 

EU Veterinary Surgeons with qualifications  listed in annex V point 5.4.2 DIRECTIVE 2005/36/EC can be approved to deliver controls in slaughter houses, game handling establishments and cutting plants but not in other food premises in the UK.

In order to deliver official controls in other premises they must also acquire the Higher Certificate in Food Control. Existing accredited routes to the Higher Certificate in Food Control are mainly designed for candidates with no previous enforcement experience.

This programme was designed as a fast track qualification for EU Veterinary Surgeons who already have experience in the delivery of official controls in UK slaughter houses, game handling establishments and cutting plants.

Why choose Birmingham?

It provides an opportunity to:

  • Learn from a multidisciplinary team of leading specialists having applied knowledge and strong links with the government authorities and the food industry
  • Develop transferable skills that can be used for many aspects of food safety and security
  • Study in a School with a first class reputation in learning, teaching and research, based in a vibrant multicultural city
  •  Study a programme accredited by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health

A final comment sums up the opinion of many of the students: ‘My Birmingham experience was amazing; a high level of science, in a multicultural city and a world class university. So keep up the hard work and enjoy Birmingham.’

Modules

Compulsory modules

  • Food production(Vet Conv) (autumn term) - 10 credits
  • Food Enforcement (Vet Conv) (autumn term) - 10 credits
  • Food Standards and Labelling (Winter term) - credits

Optional modules

Choose 30 credits (three modules) in the winter term. Examples of optional modules are listed below:

  • Food Safety Management Systems
  • Water and Health
  • Pest Management and Cleaning Systems
  • Food Fraud
  • Chemical Contamination of Food and Water
  • Applied Food Microbiology
  • Food Standards and Labelling
  • Sustainability in the Food Industry
  • Investigating Foodborne Outbreaks 
  • Food Chain Security
  • Principles of Nutrition

Related staff

Fees and funding

Tuition fees for UK/EU students 2019/20

Postgraduate Certificate: Part-time £3,180
For further information please view the fees and funding page. 

Scholarships and studentships

We offer a range of postgraduate scholarships for taught programmes and research opportunities to ensure the very best talent is nurtured and supported at postgraduate level.

Additional scholarships can be found in the funding database.

Contact the department for further information.

Entry requirements

  • A recognized veterinary qualification as detailed in Directive 2005/36/EC annex 5 point 5.4.2
  • A minimum of two years relevant experience in the UK
  • Competency in English (IELTS 6 with no less than 5.5 in any band or equivalent)

 Learn more about entry requirements

How to apply

International students requiring visas

Monday 01 July 2019 is the application deadline for international students who require a visa to study in the United Kingdom. We are not able to consider applications for 2019 made after this date; a new application should be made for 2020. Applications will reopen for 2020 in October 2019. We will close applications as soon as the programme is full, early applications are encouraged.

UK/EU (non-Tier 4) students

The application deadline is Friday 20 September 2019. Applications will reopen for 2020 on Monday 30 September 2019.

Before you make your application

You may wish to register your interest with usto receive regular news and updates on postgraduate life within this Department and the wider University.

Making your application

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

Apply now

The modules employ a mix of learning strategies, including  formal lectures, problem based case studies, tutorials, directed learning, e-learning (Canvas) and in some modules, laboratory/practical sessions.

The two modules which take place in the autumn term (Food Production(Vet Conv) and Food Enforcement (Vet Conv))  are only available to candidates completing  this accredited route to the Higher Certificate in Food Control. All the other modules will be shared with candidates on the MSC/PgDip in Food Safety Hygiene and Management.

The Higher Certificate in Food Control is the baseline qualification set by the Food Standards Agency for officers who deliver the full range of official food controls and enforcement sanctions.  

Officers with the Higher Certificate in Food Control can deliver the fill range of official controls in food premises for the FSA and for Local Authorities.

University Careers Network

Preparation for your career should be one of the first things you think about as you start university. Whether you have a clear idea of where your future aspirations lie or want to consider the broad range of opportunities available once you have a Birmingham degree, our Careers Network can help you achieve your goal.

Our unique careers guidance service is tailored to your academic subject area, offering a specialised team (in each of the five academic colleges) who can give you expert advice. Our team source exclusive work experience opportunities to help you stand out amongst the competition, with mentoring, global internships and placements available to you. Once you have a career in your sights, one-to-one support with CVs and job applications will help give you the edge.

If you make the most of the wide range of services you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.

Professional accreditation

The course is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health/Environmental Health Registration Board.