Food Microbiology

The Food Microbiology area includes studies related to microorganisms, which are important in order to guarantee food safety, as well as its shelf life, processing of traditional products and development of new food products with appropriate sensory attributes to different consumers. Furthermore, the development of products with claims of being functional and health promoting, such as probiotics and prebiotics.

The Food Microbiologist graduation may begin high school technical courses (eg, Nutrition, Pathology, Chemistry, etc.) or more commonly, during college/university in courses in the food and technology area (Food Engineering, Food Science, Biotechnology, Chemistry, among others), health or biological area (Pharmacy, Biomedicine, Life Sciences, Nutrition, Veterinary Medicine, Animal Science, among others).

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Additional training may be acquired through internships and courses offered by public and private institutions, regularly or during national and international scientific events. As a highlight, there is a specialization course offered by the Brazilian Microbiology Society (http://www.sbmicrobiologia.org.br/PDF/alimentos.pdf). You can also attend stricto sensu postgraduate programs recommended by CAPES/MEC (Ministry of Education and Culture) in the country, or seek institutions abroad.

The professionals in this area can teach at various levels (technical, undergraduate and graduate) in private and public health laboratories, industries, government regulatory agencies, research institutes and service providers, both public and private. Consulting for companies, food handlers and producers also represent a relevant area of work. The Food Microbiologist can also operate in the development and technical support to commercialization of diagnostic tests for detection and quantification of microorganisms from food samples, water, and process environments. Another possible area of operation is the international food trade, which requires professionals with technical and communication skills to ensure fair dealings, buoyed by scientific parameters and not merely by economic interests and customs restrictions.

In the Food area, the scientific journal Brazilian Journal of Microbiology, from the Brazilian Microbiology Society, publishes articles that contribute with new information on emerging and re-emerging pathogens of interest to public health and the industry, including bacteria, fungi and viruses – new detection and identification methods, epidemiology and control, among others. The journal also welcomes papers on the identification of commensal microorganisms of technological interest with modern and reliable techniques to deepen the understanding of microbial ecology in food and their interrelations with health, disease and food technology.

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Additional training may be acquired through internships and courses offered by public and private institutions, regularly or during national and international scientific events. As a highlight, there is a specialization course offered by the Brazilian Microbiology Society (http://www.sbmicrobiologia.org.br/PDF/alimentos.pdf). You can also attend stricto sensu postgraduate programs recommended by CAPES/MEC (Ministry of Education and Culture) in the country, or seek institutions abroad.

The professionals in this area can teach at various levels (technical, undergraduate and graduate) in private and public health laboratories, industries, government regulatory agencies, research institutes and service providers, both public and private. Consulting for companies, food handlers and producers also represent a relevant area of work. The Food Microbiologist can also operate in the development and technical support to commercialization of diagnostic tests for detection and quantification of microorganisms from food samples, water, and process environments. Another possible area of operation is the international food trade, which requires professionals with technical and communication skills to ensure fair dealings, buoyed by scientific parameters and not merely by economic interests and customs restrictions.

In the Food area, the scientific journal Brazilian Journal of Microbiology, from the Brazilian Microbiology Society, publishes articles that contribute with new information on emerging and re-emerging pathogens of interest to public health and the industry, including bacteria, fungi and viruses – new detection and identification methods, epidemiology and control, among others. The journal also welcomes papers on the identification of commensal microorganisms of technological interest with modern and reliable techniques to deepen the understanding of microbial ecology in food and their interrelations with health, disease and food technology.

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