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Food Chemistry (BSc)

Taught in German



Subject Description

Food chemistry is a special component of the field of chemistry that deals with food, its ingredients,  and its compositions as well as how foods can change due to environmental influences, preparation, production techniques, storage, and ageing, for example. Apart from that also the chemistry and analysis of cosmetics, utensils and animal feed is an integral part of the study of nutrition chemistry.

Subject-specific prerequisites

The first three semesters focus on the fundamentals of chemistry, biology, physics and mathematics; a previous knowledge of these subjects is certainly helpful. As the practical training forms a major part of this course of study, the student should have an interest in experimentation, a minimum of technical aptitude and enough stamina. Parts of the subject-specific literature are available only in English; therefore the prospective students should have an adequate knowledge of the English language or be willing to acquire appropriate skills as early as possible.

We strongly recommend participating in the preparatory course ‘mathematics’ that is offered to all first-year students of food chemistry. More on this...

Number of Students enrolled

117 students are enrolled in this bachelor's programme (winter semester 2017/18).


since 10 December 2010.

Composition of the Study Programme

Degree BSc


Bachelor of Science (BSc)

Duration of studies 6 Semester 180 Credit Points (CP)

Duration of Studies

6 Semesters - 180 Credit Points (CP)

Composition of Degree Programme

Composition of degree programme

The course of studies is characterised by a high degree of interdisciplinarity because students take courses from different faculties. The course of studies is subdivided into parts on chemistry, biology and food chemistry and also an instruction in the fundamentals of physics, mathematics, biology and data processing.

These basic sciences are taught together with general and inorganic chemistry in the first semester. Based on this, students will learn the fundamentals of organic, physical and analytical chemistry in the following semesters. These subjects are accompanied by several practical trainings in chemistry.

With the fourth semester the part of food chemistry gains more and more weight. The courses of food chemistry are mainly built on the fundamental chemical competences learnt in organic and analytic chemistry.
Nearly half of the workload of the sixth semester is taken up writing the bachelor’s dissertation/thesis. The student has to show that he/she is capable of working independently on an academic project.

Structure of degree programme

1st semester2nd semester3rd semester
General and Inorganic Chemistry (6 CP) Organic Chemistry of Materials (6 CP) Analytic Chemistry I (6 CP)

Qualitative Analytics- Fresenius practical training (6 CP)

Inorganic Chemistry (Practical Training) (5 CP)

Organic Chemistry II (4 CP)

Mathematics (7 CP) Thermodynamics and Electrochemistry (9 CP) Organic Chemistry (Practical Training) (10 CP)
Physics for natural scientists (6 CP) Botany of economic plants (8 CP) Physical Chemistry (Practical Training) (5 CP)
Biology (6 CP)

Inorganic Chemistry II (advanced) (4 CP)

Basics of Data Processing (2 CP)
4th semester5th semester6th semester

Food Chemistry I (13 CP)                                            

Toxicology and Environmental Law (2 CP)           

Food Chemistry III (7 CP)

Analytic Chemistry II (6 CP)

Food Chemistry II (12 CP)

Human Food of animal origin (5 CP)
Physical Chemistry II (5 CP) Plant foods (6 CP) Elective 2 (6 CP)
Biochemistry (4 CP) General and Molecular Microbiology (6 CP)

Bachelor dissertation/thesis (12 CP)


Elective 1 (6 CP)


Commencement of Studies in the Winter Semester

Commencement of studies

Only possible in the winter semester

Entrance Requirements Abitur ohne Praktikumsnachweis

Entrance requirements

  • Applicants must have an Abitur (German school leaver's examination for university entrance) or equivalent. More on this...
  • Certification of a pre-professional practical period is not required.
  • Special regulations apply to foreign applicants or those who gained their university-entrance qualifications abroad. Read more...

Vorkurs Mathe

We strongly recommend participating in the preparatory course ‘mathematics’ that is offered to all first-year students of food chemistry. More on this...

Application limited internally only winter semester

Application for admission and registration


  • The intake capacity is limited.
  • Applications must be received by the JLU Student Secretariat by July 31. More on this...

Please note that the deadline for courses of study that are not limited can be extended. The deadline extensions will be published in the application portal.


  • Special regulations apply to foreign applicants or those who gained their university-entrance qualifications abroad. Read more...

Career Options

Career Options

Programmes of further study at JLU

Having finished the Master's programme students can embark on doctoral studies.


Career options / Job market

The career opportunities for Bachelors still are difficult to assess because the Bachelor’s degree is relatively new and the job market is still establishing with respect to the new education structures. Concrete statements on career options cannot be made as long as there aren’t any employees with a Bachelor’s degree in food chemistry. For this reason statistics on the job market cannot be made. As in many other courses of studies, also the alumni of this course of studies with a Bachelor’s degree will have to conquer their job market.
Especially to large-scale enterprises with an international work force the Bachelor’s degree is already familiar, however. We can expect that Bachelors will have an advantage where a good basic education, a low age and practical knowledge that can only be gained on the job, are needed.

The Bachelor's degree is recognised as first part of the state examination for food chemists (staatliche Zwischenprüfung) and therefore offers the possibility to continue studies to become a certified food chemist. 

Fields of activity for Master graduates/ certified food chemists:

  • Official food monitoring: in chemical analysis boards of the Federal States (Bundesländer) (and sometimes also of cities and the Federal Armed Forces (Bundeswehr)) and positions within ministries and enforcement authorities.

  • Freelance: e.g. counselling of manufacturers, importers and the trade in general through analyses and legal assessments of their goods. Food chemists who work as trade chemists or experts for the food chemistry work mostlyon order of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce and are recognised by regional authorities to perform cross-checks.

  • In the food industry: research and development as well as quality control and quality assurance.

  • Cosmetics-, consumer goods- and animal food industry: research and development, quality control and quality assurance.

  • Institutions for food- and nutrition research: at universities, federal research institutions and research institutions of the food industry.

  • Others: Further fields of activity are laboratories and examination centres in the areas of drinking water, the environment (waste water, air and soil), agriculture, the chemical and pharmaceutical industry, chemical toxicology, forensic analytics and clinical chemistry.


More on this: Gesellschaft deutscher Chemiker (GdCH)

Further Information

Further Information: Documents

PDF documents for the courses of study


Examination- and study regulations


Courses offered in the course catalogue

International pages

Please have a look at our International Pages for more information in English.

Any Questions


Any Questions?

Information- and advisory services of JLU can be found under the category “contact” on this page!


Do you need assistance in choosing the right courses of study?

Offers: Courses of study

Which courses of study suits me best?AksJustus: transparent

Ask Justus offers information for prospective students


Events for prospective studentsAngebote der ZSB

There is a whole range of events offered by JLU, current events can be found under “news”: (in German)


Subject Advisor
Prof. Dr. H. Zorn
Department of Food Chemistry and Food Biotechnology
Heinrich Buff Ring 17, 35392 Giessen
Phone: 0641 - 99 34900 (office), 99 34901 (secretary)
Office hours: by appointment
Central Study Advisor
Central Student Services

Directions and welcome desk