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Food Science and Safety

HIGHER DIPLOMA IN Food Science and Safety

Programme Code

  • HP001 Diploma in Foundation Studies (DFS)
  • HP812 Year 1 & 2, Higher Diploma (HD)



QF Level: 4
QR Registration No.: 23/000664/L4
Registration Validity Period: 01/09/2024 – 31/08/2027
Commencement Date: 09/2024
Successful completion of this programme leads to an award by HKU SPACE Po Leung Kuk Stanley Ho Community College (HPSHCC)

Study Subsidy Scheme for Designated Professions / Sectors (SSSDP)

In 2024-25 academic year, local students enrolling and being offered the subsidised places of this programme under the SSSDP will receive a subsidy up to HK$39,890. After deduction of the subsidy, the annual tuition fee is HK$19,110.


DFS Application Code: HPDFS-FSS

HD Application Code: HDFSS

This programme was formerly known as Higher Diploma in Nutrition and Food Management (Theme: Food Science and Safety), and has been replaced by Higher Diploma in Food Science and Safety with effect from the 2024-25 academic year. The former is awarded within The University of Hong Kong system through HKU SPACE.

Food science is a broad industry and discipline that is necessary in the modern world and it is highly connected to our daily life. It is the broad-ranging field of science for solving real-world problems surrounding the complex food system. One of the roles of a food scientist is to safeguard the safety of foods. Food safety saves consumers from various health issues as unsafe food can be a disaster for both consumers as well as producers. Health issues nowadays are closely related to the idea of food safety globally, which is regarded by people as a highly important and pressing issue. The course material provides a solid basis for students who want to explore the knowledge in food science and food safety. The Higher Diploma in Food Science and Safety curriculum also prepares students to further continue their studies at degree level or to develop careers in the food and nutrition industries.


Programme Aims and Features

  • Equips students with an in-depth knowledge of basic sciences such as biology, chemistry, biochemistry and physiology, as well as food science, food safety, quality control and operations management;

  • Provides comprehensive training in food microbiology, instrumental food analysis and food chemistry which enables them to work in the food safety field and food industry, or to progress to further studies towards a degree in the relevant fields;

  • This programme aids students in acquiring transferable skills, such as laboratory techniques, data analysis, interpersonal, and teamwork abilities, preparing them for future study or employment in the field of food science and food safety;

  • Lecturers are dedicated and experienced, some specialism courses are taught by professionals in the food and nutrition industry;

  • The curriculum emphasises both theory and practice, as well as practical skills in science and food laboratories. These skills and knowledge will equip students to enter employment in the fast-moving and competitive food industry;

  • Learning experiences outside the classroom such as practicum and site visits to local or overseas institutions, nutrition facilities and food companies will be arranged;

  • Graduates will be capable of entering the food industry and pursue careers such as quality control and quality assurance officers, health inspectors, food technologists or work in the areas of food product research and development.

Opportunities for Further Studies

UGC-funded Universities

Graduates are eligible to apply for admission to Bachelor’s degree programmes in Food and Nutritional Science, Dietetics, Food Safety and Technology, Analytical Sciences for Testing and Certification, Nursing or related disciplines offered by local universities.

The list below shows the degree programmes that our graduates may apply for further studies*:

  • The University of Hong Kong
    Bachelor of Nursing
    Bachelor of Science
    BSc (Major in Food and Nutritional Science)
    BSc Information Management
  • The Chinese University of Hong Kong
    Bachelor of Nursing
    Bachelor of Science
    BSc Biochemistry
    BSc Community Health Practice
    BSc Exercise Science and Health Education
    BSc Natural Science
    BSc Public Health
  • Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
    BSc Biotechnology
  • City University of Hong Kong
    BEng Bioengineering
    BSc Biological Sciences
    BSc Physics
    BSc Biomedical Sciences
    BSc Chemistry
  • The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
    BA (Hons) Applied Ageing Studies and Service Management
    BSc (Hons) Applied Biology with Biotechnology
    BSc (Hons) Analytical Sciences for Testing and Certification
    BSc (Hons) Food Safety and Technology
  • Hong Kong Baptist University
    BSc (Hons) Applied Biology – Biotechnology Concentration
    BSc (Hons) Chemistry

*The above list is not exhaustive and only shows some of the examples.


Career Prospects 

Graduates will have a range of career opportunities in the food, nutrition and catering industries such as health and nutrition-related commercial companies, food manufacturing, food trading, restaurants, airline caterers or institutional food service companies, school meal caterers, elderly homes, sport and health institutions, government agencies and hospitals.

2-year Higher Diploma Programme

  • Obtain Level 2 or above in 5 subjects including English Language and Chinese Language# in the HKDSE Examination, AND have obtained Level 2 or above in one of the following HKDSE subjects: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Combined Science, Integrated Science or Technology and Living (Food Science and Technology), or equivalent; OR
  • Hold a recognised Diploma in Foundation Studies Programme, AND have taken one of the following HKDSE subjects: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Combined Science or Integrated Science or Technology and Living (Food Science and Technology), or equivalent; OR
  • Hold a Diploma Yi Jin; OR
  • Hold a Diploma of Applied Education; OR
  • Equivalent qualifications will be considered by the College.

Applicants whose HKDSE results do not meet the entry requirements of the 2-year Higher Diploma Programme should apply for admission to the Diploma in Foundation Studies (DFS) programme.


Diploma in Foundation Studies Programme

  • Level 1 or above in English Language and Chinese Language#, and have taken one of the following HKDSE subjects: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Combined Science, Integrated Science, Technology and Living (Food Science and Technology), or equivalent; AND at least 6 points+ in the best 5 subjects*^§; OR
  • Equivalent qualifications will be considered by the College.


Mature Students

Applicants who do not possess the above academic qualifications, but are aged 21 or above and with relevant work experience will be considered on individual merit.


*Applicants are allowed to use not more than 2 Applied Learning (ApL) subjects in the application. The recognition of the ApL subjects is as follows: 

“Attained with Distinction (II)” is deemed equivalent to Level 4 or above;
“Attained with Distinction (I)” is deemed equivalent to Level 3; and 
“Attained” is deemed equivalent to Level 2 in the HKDSE Examination.

#ApL Chinese (for non-Chinese speaking students) would be accepted as an alternative Chinese Language qualification.

§ If one of the five HKDSE subjects is Citizenship and Social Development, the requirement will be “Attained” for the subject.

^ If the candidate has attempted less than 5 subjects but obtained 6 points or above, the application will still be considered.

+ Level 5** = 7 points; Level 5* = 6 points; Level 5 = 5 points; Level 4 = 4 points; Level 3 = 3 points; Level 2 = 2 points; Level 1 = 1 point.

Effective from 2024-25 Academic Year:


Diploma in Foundation Studies

  • General English I & II 
  • College Speaking / Introduction to Information Technology and AI
  • College Writing / Grammar for College Studies
  • Foundations of Chinese Language*
  • Chinese Language Enhancement*
  • Basic Mathematics
  • Elements of Business
  • Foundations of Biology 
  • Foundations of Chemistry 


Higher Diploma Year 1

  • Introduction to Academic English
  • English for Academic Purposes I
  • Elementary Statistics
  • Mathematics for Food Science
  • Human Physiology and Anatomy
  • Basic Chemistry for Biological Sciences
  • Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • Introduction to Food Science
  • Introduction to Nutrition
  • College Physics for Food Science
  • Field Attachment (Optional, Non-credit-bearing)


Higher Diploma Year 2

  • English for Food and Nutritional Sciences
  • English for Academic Purposes II
  • Practical Chinese Communication*
  • Biochemistry
  • Food Chemistry
  • Food Microbiology
  • Food Processing and Analysis
  • Laboratory Techniques in Food Sciences
  • Food Safety and Quality Assurance
  • Food Science Project

* Non-Chinese speaking students or students who have not received sufficient training in the Chinese language may apply for exemption from the Chinese course(s), and alternative courses may be assigned.