Course code VET309

VET309 Food Safety

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Showing course contents for the educational year 2019 - 2020 .

Course responsible: Toril Lindbäck
ECTS credits: 19.5
Faculty: Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
Teaching language: NO
(NO=norsk, EN=Engelsk)
Teaching exam periods:
This course starts in Spring semester. This course has teaching/evaluation in Spring semester
Course frequency: Yearly
First time: Study year 2016-2017
Last time: 2022V
Preferential right:



Course contents:

The teaching in food safety will provide students with comprehensive knowledge of the pathogenic microorganisms and toxic substances that can be transferred in the food chains, with emphasis on the animal, and how health hazards can be prevented. Students will acquire an understanding of how the quality of the finished foodstuffs depends both on the health of the food-producing animals, the environment and the handling of nutrients. They should acquire competence to be able to determine which laboratory analysis of nutrients that is necessary and appropriate for different issues, aswell as knowledge to evaluate the results of such analyzes.

Food Safety in relation to past and future courses:

The subject of food safety, which has its main block in 6th semester, is based on several subjects from previous blocks. Subjects such as microbiology, biochemistry, pharmacology and toxicology form the basis for teaching in Food Safety. Especially the knowledge acquired in 6th semester of zoonoses, and how these can be transmitted through meat to humans, is important for meat inspection instruction in veterinary medicine and in the 9. semester. In 9 semester, the students will get an insight into the food authority's practical work with inspections, where the knowledge from the 6. semester is the most important basis. 

Learning outcome:

The block forms the basis so that the student after completing the course will master the following «Day one skills» by EAEVE: 1.1, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.8, 1.9, 1.10, 1.11, 1.12, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7, 2.8, 2.9, 3.6, 3.8, 3.16, 3.17, 3.20 

After completion of the courses, the students should:

  • Have developed an understanding of food safety  The student will have developed the ability to acquire and apply knowledge, and ability to cooperate and critical thinking in the field.

as a very important part of veterinary public health and as a link between veterinary and human public health.

  • Be able to explain zoonoses, other agents and toxic substances / pollutants that can be transferred in the food chains, with emphasis on animal infection paths.
  • Know the principles for the detection of pathogenic bacteria and examination of microbiological quality of nutrients and water, to conduct such analyzes, and assess the significance of the analytical results.
  • Take precautions to prevent contamination in the food chain.
  • Conduct epidemiological outbreak investigation of food-borne illnesses.
  • Perform a simple microbiological / toxicological risk assessment.
  • Have an awareness of animal welfare during transport to slaughterhouses and at the slaughterhouse.
  • Know the content of the laws and regulations related to safe food production.
  • Have learned to collaborate through colloquiums and group work, and be able to present the academic material both in writing and oral.
Learning activities:
Pathogenic organisms and toxic substances may be transferred to humans through food and water, and is both nationally and globally important causes of disease. Veterinarians are responsible for the public meat control and are employed in the local Food Safety Authority, which is responsible so that all the food that is traded is safe to be eaten. Many also work to ensure safe production in the food industry. The understanding of the relationships in the food chain (from earth and fjord to the table) is gradually built up throughout the veterinary programme, but it is focused specifically on this subject in Food Safety. The slaughterhouse excursion is ought to give the students a basis to understand the theory of what is taught in this block, but also a small insight into meat control and animal welfare in slaughterhouses which is being taught in veterinary public health in the 6th semester and in Rogaland in the 9th semester. 

Recommended literature and detailed description of the course are found at the block's home area on Canvas.

eaching takes place in the form of lectures (approx. 110 hours), laboratory courses (approx. 40 hours), slaughterhouse excursion, group work in outbreak eludication (with lab), and colloquia exercises for self-study, organized study groups with plenary discussions, different exercises in food safety/risk assessment and food safety, ending with presentation/submission.


Theoretical part: Basic theory on agents / toxic substances, and on food safety and product quality in the animal food chain and the aquatic environment. Ends with a multiple choice test.

Laboratory part: Laboratory course, and group work with outbreak eludication. Ends with a presentation of group work / submission of report.


Food chains and risk based supervision: Lectures in risk assessment and management.

Group work in risk assessment with exercises in microbiology / toxicology.

Ends with a presentation / discussion.


At the end of the semester, it will be held a final oral examination which includes material from the entire syllabus.

Recommended prerequisites:
The blocks prior in the study such as microbiology, biochemistry, pharmacology and toxicology.
Mandatory activity:
Excursion to abottoir, including preparation and summary.Laboratory course, including lectures in lab theory at startup.Epi-gamesOutbreaks investigation. The work spans a few weeks, but the time spent to solve the task will differ between the groups.Tasks with risk assessment and food safety

It is allowed with up to 10% absence from compulsory teaching. In case of absence beyond this, a medical certificate is required.

Excluded from the 10% is: Excursion to the slaughterhouse including preparation and summary, lectures in lab theory, presentations of outbreak detection and risk assessment. In case of absence, a medical certificate is required. To participate in the course in meat inspection at the slaughterhouse in 9th semester, the excursion to the slaughterhouse must be approved.

On submission of a medical certificate it will be created a customized program so that it is possible to obtain a valid examination provided that the absence is no longer than 1 week. Students will normally be able to take the exam even though not all mandatory lectures is approved, but the grade is not valid until the requirements are passed.


Abattoir-excursion, MC-test, lab-course including outbreak investigation, and risk assessment in toksicology must be approved before final oral exam.

Final oral exam includes questions from the whole year.

Assessment: Grades (A-E)

Exam: Final oral exam.

Makeup exam in August

Permitted aids: None

Entrance requirements:
Admitted to the Veterinary Medicine Program and completed minimum 100,5 ECTS the first and second year at the program

Requirements for personal equipment

None. Lab coats are available at the laboratory.

Programme requirements:

1) Slaughterhouse excursion. Participated/Not participated

2)Multiple choice: Pass/fail

3) Laboratory theory: Participated/Not participated

4) Outbreak Task: Pass / Fail. Assessed by a submitted questionnaire, reorders, report and presentation (20 min in groups). All aids allowed. If not passed, the student must submit a new report, and present a new presentation with the examination no later than August.

5) Assignment in risk assessment(Food safety: Submissions/presentasions will be assessed as pass/fail


Please see the instructions for the laboratory (Microbiology hall). It is mandatory with lab coats. Individual lab coats in the courses where the students are working with microbiology. There is a clean and unclean zone by the entrance to the laboratory. Hand wash and coat change is required at entry and exit.

Training in fire protection is provided. It is mandatory with lab coats when working with gas. A first aid kit and an emergency shower are available. Gas plants are centrally controlled with a stopcock. The stopcock is demonstrated to the students at the first visit. The number of gas units is reduced to a minimum. Gas plants are checked prior to the instruction 2 times a year. There are separate fume hoods used where chemicals are used.

Since working with infection subjects represent a real risk of infection, thorough training and a variety of security measures are initiated (see infection learning).

It is informed both orally and in writing (in writing about Listeria monocytogenes) that special consideration must be taken by students with impaired immune systems or who are pregnant. Students in such a risk group must inform their course leader about their condition, and it will be ensured that these students do not get distributed tasks or cultures of L. monocytogenes or Salmonella Typhimurium.

Examination details: Multiple Choice and oral exam: A - E / F