Guilty or Not Guilty: The Fight against Food Fraud

Discover more about the launch of the Food Integrity, Fraud and Traceability Distance Learning module.

The Institute for Global Food Security was established at Queen’s University Belfast back in March 2013. Since then, we can see the process of food analysis is inching ever closer to forensic investigation. Fraud, adulteration and contamination can happen to almost any edible commodity that you care to think of. Or, more likely, that you care not to think of — not just beef burgers with a hidden equine component but staples such as fish, spices and fruit juices.

Thus a significant element of the Distance Learning MSc Global Food Security (Food Safety) is the Food Integrity, Fraud and Traceability module. In this module, examples of highly varied, internationally relevant and difficult to detect incidences of food fraud and compromised food traceability are examined. 

The range and types of food fraud are discussed and the means of detecting such incidences to ensure that food is safe, wholesome and authentic are demonstrated.  Regulatory and legislative requirements and associated challenges to the maintenance of food quality/safety are elucidated highlighting the need for sensitive analytical techniques which can assist in such tasks. 

The economic consequences of food product recalls and withdrawals due to food contamination incidents, for industry, regulatory bodies and the consumer are assessed highlighting the need to ensure that traceability is maintained and not compromised across the whole food supply chain. This includes a study of high profile case studies of food fraud which have occurred globally. Examining what opportunities for food fraud to be perpetrated existed, and the weaknesses in lengthy, complex food supply chains which have resulted in high profile incidents. 

The Food Integrity, Fraud and Traceability module explores consumer knowledge, understanding of and perception of food fraud and the willingness to pay for improvements to aspects of food safety and traceability. In addition, critical thinking around understanding the mind-set of a perpetrator of food fraud, and what unique investigative skills can be used to detect  the food fraudster and ultimately defend and protect the food supply chain.


Find out more about our MSc Global Food Security (Food Safety) by visting the course finder entry here

Apply now to our Direct Applicant Portal