MPH Programs

MPH Food Safety

With about four million food-borne illnesses happening in Canada each year, f
ood safety is an important public health issue. And because it involves various factors from farm to table, food safety is very complicated to secure.

That’s why cooperation between the food industry, public health sectors and even consumers is needed to improve food safety. For instance, producers should avoid food contamination from environmental and human sources. To achieve a high degree of safety, food processors rely on modern sterilization, preservation and detection methods. These methods are based on molecular microbiology and biotechnology to reduce food contamination.

Food service workers also have a role in food safety and should comply with basic food hygiene principles.

The food safety surveillance programs of the provincial and federal governments keep track of food-borne illnesses. This allows food safety specialists to respond rapidly to food-borne outbreaks.

Due to the complex nature of food safety, adequate food safety education requires a multidisciplinary approach involving many scientific areas, such as food science, microbiology, chemistry, toxicology, (veterinary/human) medicine, animal science, epidemiology, environmental health, health promotion, health policy and global health.

The interdisciplinary training provided in the MPH program in food safety will help students develop a strong skill set in public health aspects of food safety. These such as disease/illness outcomes, food-borne disease surveillance, epidemiology, toxicology, risk assessment, risk management, and so on.

This new program will provide graduates with the knowledge and skills needed to bring a public health and food science perspective to their work as they seek to address the complex issues of food safety.

Core Courses

SPH 500 - Health Policy and Management (*3)
SPH 501 - Determinants of Health (*3)
SPH 514 - Environmental Health (*3)
SPH 531 - Statistical Methods in Health Research (*3)
SPH 597 - Fundamentals of Epidemiology (*3)
SPH 598 - Field Practicum (*6)
SPH 599 - Capping Project (*3)

Specialization Courses

SPH 512 - Environmental Risk Assessment and Management (*3)
SPH 522 - Principles of Toxicology (*3)
SPH 527 - Food Safety (*3)
AFNS 580 - Advanced Study of Foodborne Pathogens (*3)
AFNS 581 - Advanced Foods (*3)


*6 graduate-level coursework approved by the student’s advisor.

Length of Program

The minimum time to complete the program is 16 months. The maximum time permitted for completion of the program is six years (full or part time) from the date of first registration.