Food Manufacturing and Technology

Key Information


MPhil: 1.5-3 years, PhD: 2-4 years


MPhil: 2-4 years, PhD: 3-8 years

Entry Requirements

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Start Dates in October and January

Programme Overview

The University of Lincoln's National Centre for Food Manufacturing is an internationally recognised provider of education and research in the food manufacturing and technology sector.

Our research expertise include food chemistry, microbiology, product development, quality and safety systems, food manufacturing robotics and automation, sustainability, and technical management. Research conducted by postgraduate students in the Centre has had practical applications in improving safety, quality, and efficiency in food manufacturing. Previous research project areas have included food safety and quality assurance, sensory analysis, packaging systems, food manufacturing technologies, resource efficiency, process automation, and robotic applications.

Academics who have held key research roles working with industry will be available to supervise and advise students throughout this research programme. This includes Dr Bukola Onarinde (Food Analysis/Microbiology/Chemistry) and Dr Wayne Martindale (Food Insights and Sustainability). Students have access to specialist equipment and have the opportunity to conduct in-depth research in a specific area of interest.

Key Features

Conduct independent, original, and academically significant research

Benefit from training courses to develop key research skills

Supervision and support from academic staff

Present at talks and seminars to showcase your work

Enrol in January or October each year

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How You Study

Research students on this programme will have two supervisors assigned to them, each with specialist knowledge in their fields. These supervisors are available to monitor and support students throughout the duration of their research project in the form of regular meetings.

Due to the nature of postgraduate research programmes, the majority of time is spent in independent study and research. Students will have meetings with their academic supervisors, but the frequency of these will vary depending on individual requirements, subject area, staff availability, and stage of programme.

Where You Will Study

The National Centre for Food Manufacturing (NCFM) is a satellite campus based 50 miles from Lincoln in the heart of the UK’s largest food manufacturing cluster. Students are able to benefit from these close links to industry and outstanding specialist food facilities. Please note that the NCFM campus does not have residential facilities and our postgraduate students tend to find their own accommodation locally.

Research Areas and Topics

The key to success on a postgraduate research programme is to find a research topic that you are passionate about and identify a supervisory team that has expertise in this area. The first thing that all prospective students should do is directly contact a member of staff from one of these areas that you feel is best aligned with your chosen research area to discuss the application process further.

The National Centre for Food Manufacturing has expertise in the following areas:

  • Food microbiology and safety
  • Food chemistry
  • Food manufacturing systems (e.g. lean manufacturing, packaging, automation)
  • Food process engineering
  • New product development and sensory sciences
  • Food quality and safety systems
  • Food manufacturing robotics
  • Food industry digitalisation
  • Sustainability and carbon net zero

Examples of research undertaken previously include:

  • Food safety and novel decontamination techniques
  • Heat processing and safety of low moisture foods
  • Packaging and seal integrity
  • Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) of fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Antimicrobial materials
  • Quality improvement of dried fruits
  • Resource efficiency of vegetable processing
  • Food Safety Culture
  • Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) analysis

Explore Our Research

How you are assessed

A PhD is usually awarded based on the quality of a student's thesis and ability to present and successfully defend their chosen research topic in an oral examination (viva voce). They are also expected to demonstrate how their research findings have contributed to knowledge or developed existing theory or understanding.

How to Apply

Postgraduate Research Application Support

Find out more about the application process for research degrees and what you'll need to complete on our How to Apply page, which also features contact details for dedicated support with your application.

How to Apply
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To support your experience within the postgraduate research community, new students are encouraged to enrol in October or January. In addition to meeting peers across the University who are starting their research programme at the same time, there is access to a central training programme designed around the first three months of study, and targeted support aligned to each stage of the postgraduate research journey. Alternative enrolment dates may be agreed with your supervisor on an individual basis.

Entry Requirements 2024-25

Entry Requirements

First or upper second class honours degree in a relevant subject.

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.

Programme Fees

You will need to have funding in place for your studies before you arrive at the University. Our fees vary depending on the course, mode of study, and whether you are a UK or international student. You can view the breakdown of fees for this programme below. Research students may be required to pay additional fees in addition to cover the cost of specialist resources, equipment and access to any specialist collections that may be required to support their research project. These will be informed by your research proposal and will be calculated on an individual basis.

Programme Fees

Funding Your Research

Loans and Studentships

Find out more about the optional available to support your postgraduate research, from Master's and Doctoral Loans, to research studentship opportunities. You can also find out more about how to pay your fees and access support from our helpful advisors.

Explore Funding Options
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Career Development

A doctoral qualification can be the capstone of academic achievement and often marks the beginning of a career in academia or research. A research programme provides the opportunity to become a true expert in your chosen field, while developing a range of valuable transferable skills that can support your career progression. A research-based degree is also the most direct pathway to an academic career. PhDs and research degrees are a great chance to expand your network and meet diverse people with similar interests, knowledge, and passion.

The University’s Doctoral School provides a focal point for Lincoln’s community of researchers, where ideas and experiences can be developed and shared across disciplines. It also offers support and training to help equip you for both academic and non-academic careers.

Doctoral School

Academic Contact

For more information about this course, please contact:

Dr Bukola Onarinde

Research at Lincoln

Through our research, we are striving to change society for the better. Working with regional, national, and international partners, our academics are engaged in groundbreaking studies that are challenging the status quo. We also understand the importance of providing the best possible environment for pursuing research that can support our communities and make a tangible difference to the world around us.

Explore Our Research
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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.