Key Information


14 months

Typical Offer



Brayford Pool

Validation Status




Course Code


MSc Agri-food Technology with Professional Practice

This course is accredited by the Institute of Food Science and Technology (IFST). The IFST is the UK’s leading professional body for food science and technology.

Key Information


14 months

Typical Offer



Brayford Pool

Validation Status




Course Code


Dr Ramana Sundara  - Programme Leader

Dr Ramana Sundara - Programme Leader

Dr Sundara has been actively involved in food research for over 25 years. Before joining the University of Lincoln, he was a Group Leader for Confectionery at Nestle Product Technology Centre, York (Nestle PTC), responsible for developing and launching new products in various countries. Subsequently, he led the External Research Collaborations portfolio at Nestle PTC including the supervision of PhD studentships. He secured funding from BBSRC, EPSRC, and Innovate UK, and successfully managed multi-disciplinary projects. He has authored over 50 scientific papers and 6 patents, with an emphasis on chemistry and processing technology of fruit, vegetables, dairy, and chocolate products.

Academic Staff List Make an Enquiry

Welcome to MSc Agri-food Technology with Professional Practice

The globally important agri-food sector is intrinsically linked to challenges around land and water use, climate change, sustainability, health, and wellbeing. This industry-guided programme aims to equip students with the advanced skills, knowledge, and expertise needed to undertake technical and production management roles within this growing industry.

Students at Lincoln have the opportunity to study a variety of forward thinking topics such as advanced crop science, advanced food manufacturing, new product and process development, food safety and technical management, agri-robotics, as well as commercial, operational, supply chain management.

During the programme, you may have the chance to visit agri-food organisations to see the practical application of subject matter. Field trips or visits will go ahead as long as restrictions allow. You may also have the opportunity to hear from a series of guest speakers.

Students on the MSc Agri-food Technology with Professional Practice programme will have the opportunity to undertake a Collaborative Research Project in collaboration with an industry partner. Students are expected to identify and secure their own industry projects, however support is available to those who need it. This can be with one of the University's industry partners or with an independently sourced organisation.

How You Study

This MSc is intentionally wide-ranging and is designed to prepare students for opportunities across the broad and fast-moving agri-food sector. The programme takes a holistic, all encompassing, farm-to-fork approach, acknowledging the need to optimise performance and best assure/control the food products in the agri-food supply chain.

Programme Modules:

- Advanced Food Manufacturing
- Agri-Robotics
- Digitisation in Agri-food Industry
- Food Safety and Technical Management
- Global Agri-food Supply Chain Systems
- New Product and Process Development
- Principles of Crop Science
- Research Methods
- Collaborative Research Project

Following the taught element of the programme, students will undertake a Collaborative Research Project, where they will have the opportunity to make contacts and apply their knowledge in a real-life setting with a six-month professional practice route.

Students are expected to pay for their own travel, accommodation, and general living expenses while undertaking this project. Students will be expected to identify and secure their own projects. Support is available to those who need it.

Contact and Independent Study

Weekly contact hours on this programme may vary depending on the individual modules and the stage of study. Postgraduate level study involves a significant proportion of independent study, exploring the material covered in lectures and seminars. As a general guide, for every hour spent in class, students are expected to spend at least two to three hours in independent study. For more detailed information please contact the Programme Leader.

An Introduction to Your Modules

† Some courses may offer optional modules. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by staff availability.

Advanced Food Manufacturing 2023-24FDS9097MLevel 72023-24This module typically covers the key fundamentals in advanced manufacturing within the food industry demanding strong operation skills coupled with an in-depth knowledge of food process unit operations, food preservation, food packaging systems, hygienic food machine design, food factory design, and food process engineering. Students are expected to gain understanding of the basis of advanced food manufacturing unit operations and their applications in the food industry incorporating how traditional processes are still prevalent with new designs and automation. The students may also gain an understanding of new and novel food production operations.CoreAgri-Robotics 2023-24AGR9004MLevel 72023-24This module introduces students to the subject of Agri-Food Engineering and, in particular, to the role of modern automation in developing sophisticated and efficient engineering systems to meet the ever increasing demand of this sector. After a brief introduction on industrial robotics and automation, a range of applications will be presented to investigate, analyse and propose the use of robotics to automate pre-harvesting and post-harvesting operations in the Agri-Food sector. This might include the innovative Industry 4.0 model as an overall holistic framework to evaluate the impact of the proposed applications on the Farm of the Future.CoreCollaborative Research Project 2023-24FDS9107MLevel 72023-24This module forms the final stage of the MSc Agri-food Technology (with Professional Practice). This module provides students with opportunity to apply agri-food knowledge and laboratory skills to an extended practice research study within a commercial context. The MSc Agri-food Technology (with Professional Practice) has been specially developed to incorporate this work placement as an integral part of students' project study, and to enhance students' ability to rise to a challenge and thrive in an industry context. By successfully completing the project, it is expected that students will have demonstrated self-reliance, demonstration, and adaptability. There will also be the opportunity to develop soft skills and enhance their communication skills through different styles of reporting. Above all, this project provides the chance to demonstrate the energy and confidence to do something extra and ambitious as a part of a Master's degree. Students will be guided in strategically planning their experimental work, be expected to carry out all appropriate risk assessments for all stages of their practical work; source and access relevant published work; generate interim reports (both oral and written summaries); give an oral presentation to staff and peers, and submit a written dissertation upon completion of the study. Students are expected to schedule regular meetings with their project supervisor and industry supervisor to receive ongoing feedback on progress, and develop and understanding of the relevant ideas and work in the chosen subject area. Students can gain an overview of the possible approaches to the given problem, initially through suggestions from their supervisors, and then from their own investigations, research work, and discussions with industrial partners. Students are expected to pay for their own travel, accommodation, and general living expenses while undertaking the project. Please note that the option to undertake the Professional Practice route will be subject to students performance during the taught element of the programme and students will be expected to identify and secure their project. Support is available to students who may need it during this process.CoreDigitisation in Agri-food Industry 2023-24AGR9016MLevel 72023-24Agriculture and the food chain become more and more data-driven. Digitisation is the use of new and advanced technologies, integrated into one system, to enable farmers, wholesalers, food manufactures, and other stakeholders within the agri-food value chain. Digitalisation simulated by precision agriculture can be a key factor to solving problems in agriculture with regards to the environment, the working conditions, food security, and other public interests.CoreFood Safety & Technical Management 2023-24FDS9098MLevel 72023-24This module typically covers the key quality assurance and technical roles within the food industry with management skills coupled with knowledge of product safety, quality and legality with a demonstration of attention to detail alongside good communication and interpersonal skills. Students are expected to consider how to define the Technical Standards of a food manufacturing business, including a review of legislative requirements, necessary accreditation standards, customer expectations and incorporation of a manufacturers own particular business requirements. Food industry enforcement bodies / government agencies and the business technical function interaction with such authorities will be considered, as will the role of product recall and crisis management systems during challenging circumstances.CoreGlobal Agri-food Supply Chain Systems 2023-24AGR9017MLevel 72023-24This module examine global agri-food supply chain systems. Today's businesses operate in a global environment that requires agri-food enterprises to consider rest of the world in their competitive strategy analysis, despite of their market base or location. Businesses cannot isolate themselves or disregard external factors such as food safety, trends, competitive positions, or technology advancements in other countries. This change in trends, technologies, food safety, trade, and modernisation of transport infrastructures raised the importance of supply chain management to new levels. Agile management of supply chains is necessary to succeed in volatile demand situations experienced in many markets.CoreNew Product & Process Development 2023-24FDS9099MLevel 72023-24The module content typically covers the aspects of food innovation, product and process development and investigates the impact of new technologies for the formulation of healthy nutritional foods. The student considers critique and appraise the way in which food manufacturers develop new products to reflect customer, consumer and other market driver demands. The module considers the new food product development areas linked to health, nutrition, sensory science and emerging technologies.CorePrinciples of Crop Science 2023-24AGR9003MLevel 72023-24The module typically provides a review of current crop science and its contribution to large scale food production. This might include new technologies and their part in the future of sustainable crop production. The module considers key components of crop science as individual units through to interacting complexes. Throughout the module, the importance of the microbial interrelationship with plants is considered, covering both pathogens and beneficials. Students will be expected to independently evaluate the topics critically and develop skills leading to responsive and flexible use of crop science in the production of crops in a wide range of agronomic situations.CoreResearch Methods (LIAT) 2023-24AGR9014MLevel 72023-24This module covers the fundamental skills and background knowledge that students need to undertake a research project, including: surveying literature; selecting and justifying a research topic; planning of research; academic writing, data collection, handling and analysis; and presentation and reporting of research.Core

How you are assessed

A variety of assessment methods are used during this course, including essays, examinations, oral presentations, and practicals. These assessments are designed to develop the skills that will be needed for a career in the sector.

The University of Lincoln's policy on assessment feedback aims to ensure that academics will return in-course assessments to students promptly - usually within 15 working days of the submission date.


Students on this programme will have access to industry-relevant specialist technologies and new equipment at both the University’s National Centre for Food Manufacturing (NCFM) and Riseholme campus. Travel costs between campuses will be covered by the Lincoln Institute for Agri-food Technology.

The National Centre for Food Manufacturing, located in Holbeach, is committed to helping the sector innovate. It works with employers and partners towards this goal, aided by the University’s partnership with leading equipment suppliers, and specialist facilities, food factory, and cutting-edge automation.

Our employer and industry links provide an opportunity to network, which could lead to placement opportunities for students who choose to undertake the Professional Practice route.

Students on this course will have the opportunity to study at our Riseholme campus, situated just three miles north of Lincoln on a beautiful parkland campus.

Students may also have the chance to visit agri-food companies, helping them to understand the practical applications of their knowledge, and hear from a series of guest speakers on sustainability in the food industry and agri-robotics.

A Rural Setting

Situated just three miles north of Lincoln in a beautiful semi-rural setting, the University's Riseholme Park Campus is home to the Lincoln Institute for Agri-Food Technology, offering short courses in agriculture and agronomy alongside postgraduate and research programmes.

The campus spans more than 200 hectares, incorporating woodlands, parkland, watercourses and grasslands. It features a working farm and a variety of heritage features, centred around the historic Grade II listed Riseholme Hall.

The University's National Centre for Food Manufacturing (NCFM) is based in Holbeach, in south Lincolnshire. This food manufacturing technology hub provides specialist facilities and industry-standard equipment, including analytical laboratories with a test kitchen and sensory testing suite, a technician training centre and processing facilities.

Riseholme Hall

Accreditations and Memberships

This course is accredited by the Institute of Food Science and Technology (IFST). IFST is the UK’s leading professional body for food science and technology. For more information, visit

Career Opportunities

This programme is designed to prepare students for a career in one of the world’s largest industries, agri-food. Agriculture companies, food manufacturers, producers, and retailers are large employers, as are government departments that develop food policy.

Graduates may pursue careers in technical roles, marketing, distribution, plant supervision, and product development. They may also choose to form their own company, with the help of the University’s award-winning business support centre, Sparkhouse. Some may choose to pursue research and PhD pathways (particularly in the field of agri-robotics).


The University of Lincoln has launched the world's first Centre for Doctoral Training in Agri-Food Robotics in collaboration with the University of Cambridge and the University of East Anglia. This new advanced training centre in agri-food robotics is creating the largest ever cohort of Robotics and Autonomous Systems (RAS) specialists for the global food and farming sectors, thanks to a multi-million pound funding award the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

Thorvald is one of a number of pioneering robots and the future of autonomous farming. The University of Lincoln, through the Lincoln Institute for Agri-Food Technology, is building the digital “brains” to work on Thorvald’s steel–framed 200kg square chassis, capable of carrying a further 200kg payload.


All applicants meeting the initial academic requirements for this course are required to undertake an interview with academic staff before a decision concerning the offer of a place can be made. It is expected that applicants will be able to demonstrate a keen interest in agriculture and all aspects of the farm-to-fork process. In order to make this process available to all applicants, we utilise Skype as the preferred medium for those applicants who are not able to travel to Lincoln prior to the start of the programme.

International Applications

Please note that this programme is now closed for international applications for September 2023 entry.

Entry Requirements 2023-24

First or second class honours degree or equivalent overseas qualification.

We will consider applicants from non-related degrees, with relevant experience.

If you have studied outside of the UK, and are unsure whether your qualification meets the above requirements, please visit our country pages for information on equivalent qualifications:

Overseas students will be required to demonstrate English language proficiency equivalent to IELTS 6.0 overall, with a minimum of 5.5 in each element. For information regarding other English language qualifications we accept, please visit the English Requirements page:

If you do not meet the above IELTS requirements, you may be able to take part in one of our Pre-session English and Academic Study Skills courses:

These specialist courses are designed to help students meet the English language requirements for their intended programme of study.

Fees and Funding

For eligible students, there are more ways than ever before to fund your postgraduate study, whether you want to do a taught or research course. For those wishing to undertake a Master's course, UK students can apply for a loan as a contribution towards the course and living costs. Loans are also available to those who wish to undertake doctoral study. The University offers a number of scholarships and funded studentships for those interested in postgraduate study. Learn how Master's and PhD loans, scholarships, and studentships can help you fund your studies on our Postgraduate Fees and Funding pages.

Programme Fees

Programme-Specific Additional Costs

For each course students may find that there are additional costs. These may be with regard to the specific clothing, materials or equipment required. Some courses provide opportunities for students to undertake field work or field trips. Where these are compulsory, the cost for travel and accommodation will be covered by the University and so is included in the fee. Where these are optional, students will normally be required to pay their own transport, accommodation, and general living costs.

With regards to text books, the University provides students who enrol with a comprehensive reading list and you will find that our extensive library holds either material or virtual versions of the core texts that you are required to read. However, students may prefer to purchase some of these and will be responsible for this cost.

Postgraduate Events

Find out more about how postgraduate study can help further your career, develop your knowledge, or even prepare you to start your own business at one of our postgraduate events.

Find out More

Prioritising Face-to-Face Teaching

At the University of Lincoln, we strive to ensure our students’ experience is engaging, supportive, and academically challenging. Throughout the Coronavirus pandemic, we have adapted to Government guidance to keep our students, staff, and community safe. All remaining Covid-19 legal restrictions in England were lifted in February 2022 under the Government’s Plan for Living with Covid-19, and we have embraced a safe return to in-person teaching on campus. Where appropriate, face-to-face teaching is enhanced by the use of digital tools and technology and may be complemented by online opportunities where these support learning outcomes.

We are fully prepared to adapt our plans if changes in Government guidance make this necessary, and we will endeavour to keep current and prospective students informed. For more information about how we are working to keep our community safe, please visit our coronavirus web pages.

The University intends to provide its courses as outlined in these pages, although the University may make changes in accordance with the Student Admissions Terms and Conditions.