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Food Safety
FNH 413
Instructor: Dr. Siyun Wang
Office: FNH 241
Office Hours: 3:30-5 pm Tuesdays or by Email appointment
Class Schedule: Tu/Th 2:00-3:30pm
Classroom: FNH 40
Important Course Pages
Lecture Notes
Course Discussion

Course Overview as of August 2016

This course covers a variety of topics in current and critical food safety issues, with an emphasis on microbial food safety. Specific topics include:

  • Biological and chemical hazards that pose health risks through foodborne transmission;
  • Characterization and occurrence of causative agents in various foods and food supply systems;
  • Surveillance, control and prevention of foodborne disease

Course Prerequisites

In order to qualify for this course, students must have the following prerequisites: MICB 202 and CHEM 233.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the course you are expected to be able to:

  • Recognize and describe the characteristics of important foodborne pathogens in foods;
  • Appraise high risk foods and the associated risks;
  • Identify ways to control harmful microorganisms in foods;
  • Illustrate the principles of foodborne illness surveillance and prevention;
  • Discuss about the current technologies used in foodborne pathogen detection and characterization;
  • Know how to facilitate group projects as well as be a good team member;
  • Apply critical thinking skills to solving problems in practical, real-world situations about food safety.

Course Materials

Reference Textbook: You are not required to purchase the following textbooks. A copy of the textbooks will be placed on reserve at the Woodward Library.

  • Morris, J.G.; Potter, M.E. (eds). Foodborne Infections and Intoxications, 4th edition. Academic Press. Publication date: March, 2013. ISBN-9780124160415.

Peer-reviewed Journals: Available online in UBC libraries. Selected papers will be used as reading materials in classes and group projects, and such notifications will be given in advance on Connect.

  • Applied and Environmental Microbiology
  • Food and Chemical Toxicology
  • Food Microbiology
  • Food Research International
  • International Journal of Food Microbiology
  • Journals of Food Science
  • Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry

Course Format and Evaluation

The format of the course will be two 90-minute face-to-face contact time per week.

Activity Percentage of Grade
Quizzes 21%
Case Study: Oral Presentation (marked as a group) 16%, evaluation by your group members will be used as a multiplier)
Case study: Individual Written Assignment 18%
Final Examination 32%
Food Safety Blog 10%
Participation 3%
TOTAL: 100%

Academic Integrity

You are expected to act in accordance with the University of British Columbia policy on academic integrity (see Student Conduct Code, the Graduate Student Handbook for more details).

Use of cell phones and smart phones is NOT allowed in classes and exams.

Course Schedule

  • Date Topic
  • Sep-06 Imagine UBC Day: No Class
  • Sep-08 Introduction and course overview; Estimates of burden associated with foodborne disease
  • Sep-13 Foods most often associated with major foodborne pathogens; Review of microbiology basics
  • Sep-15 Campylobacter
  • Sep-20 Salmonella (by Karen Fong, PhD student)
  • Sep-22 Escherichia coli
  • Sep-27 Listeria monocytogenes
  • Sep-29 Clostridium botulinum
  • Oct-04 Noroviruses and hepatitis viruses
  • Oct-06 Genetic factors regulating the survival of pathogens in food supply systems
  • Oct-11 Methods used for rapid detection of foodborne pathogens
  • Oct-13 Case 1: Rapid detection of foodborne pathogens I
  • Oct-18 Case 1: Rapid detection of foodborne pathogens II
  • Oct-20 Case 1: Rapid detection of foodborne pathogens III
  • Oct-25 Case 1: Rapid detection of foodborne pathogens IV
  • Oct-27 Veterinary drug residues in foods
  • Nov-01 Development and mitigation of antimicrobial resistance
  • Nov-03 Food allergy, intolerance and hypersensitivity
  • Nov-08 Foodborne outbreak investigation
  • Nov-10 Molecular subtyping of foodborne pathogens
  • Nov-15 Case 2: Foodborne outbreak investigation I
  • Nov-17 Case 2: Foodborne outbreak investigation II
  • Nov-22 Case 2: Foodborne outbreak investigation III
  • Nov-24 Case 2: Foodborne outbreak investigation IV
  • Nov-29 Current food safety trends
  • Dec-01 Course review

Schedule for Group Presentations

Note: to be updated at a later time

Date Group