Food Safety and World Trade

Module summary

Module code: FOOD1014
Level: 7
Credits: 15
School: Engineering and Science
Department: Natural Resources Institute
Module Coordinator(s): Linda Nicolaides



Understanding the role of food law including legislation and standards and how they are designed to protect consumer health as well as supporting national and international trade. In this dynamic field it is important for food businesses, NGOs and government practitioners to understand issues of hazards associated with specific agricultural commodities, food and feed products and how they are controlled in the production of a safe and wholesome food supply. The impact of legislation, official and private standards on the viability of small and medium enterprises and of the ability of these enterprises to meet national and international standards will be considered. The means by which information is collected, how it is used to develop national and international legislation will also be discussed.

On completion of this Module students will be able to:
• demonstrate understanding of the health and trade issues of food and feed safety;
• reflect upon preventing and controlling the contamination of food and feed;
• critically assess the links between food safety legislation required to meet the legal norms of the WTO and western trading blocks and the effects of these on producers and processors in developing countries and emerging economies;
• demonstrate an understanding of the drafting and implementation of the international strategies to develop regulatory framework for the management of food safety.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student will be able to:
1. demonstrate a knowledge base of food safety issues at academic and practical levels;
2. reflect on the significance and inter-relationship of the effects of International and regional legal norms and codes on productivity of producers and processors and the consequential social impacts;
3. have critical insight into how these external legal sources, as well as private standards, are prepared, implemented and enforced;
4. have the skills to formulate innovative proposals to further analyze issues associated with food safety and world trade.

Indicative content

In the context of food safety, the Module will examine the impact of globalisation on the productivity of food producers and processors. Issues regarding designation of appropriate local and international legislation as well as incentives to comply with these requirements are discussed. It examines how these strategies can impact upon the viability of small and medium sized enterprises.

The Module will also examine the means by which new food safety regulations are drafted and implemented. The mechanism of co-operation and co-ordination between the various stakeholders (international agencies, government, food producers and processors, the health sector and the consumer) are examined. Issues such as supply chains, supplier quality assurance and private standards are also included.

Teaching and learning activity

Lectures and discussions. Interactive sessions online. Development of case studies. Mentoring on the preparation and development of digital materials that are required as part of the formative assessment of this Module will be included.


Presentation: 50% weighting, 50% pass mark.
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4.
Duration: 5 minutes.
Outline Details: A filmed presentation that addresses a topic related to this Module.

Report: 50% weighting, 50% pass mark.
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4.
Word Length: 2000 words.
Outline Details: A report on a hot topic in this subject area.

Formative Assessment: A group presentation followed by a discussion and a class quiz will be used to assess student’s knowledge and prepare students for the summative assessments.