This Level 4 diploma is based on the principles of nutrition and food science, and their application within culinary arts. It is composed of:
- Gastronomy and Food Trends: this unit reflects on gastronomy and the evolution of food trends, culture, eating habits and diet. Students will attend lectures and seminars on food trends and the current health and wellness industry. Gastronomy topics will include cheese lectures, wine appreciation, teas, herbs and key influential global ingredients such as the cocoa bean.
- Nutritional Principles: understand the basic principles of nutrition and diet and the effect of food and eating habits on health. Important nutritional topics will be covered such as macro and micro nutrients, dietary requirements, hydration, effects of diet on health and disease. Students will be introduced to specialised nutrition topics such as nutrition in sport, eating disorders and diet related illnesses. Discussion will be based around ingredients, food choices and optimum health. The Nutrition Principles module is taught by a registered qualified Dietitian.
- Science of Food: the science behind cooking is essential to understand food choice and how the body manages food. A range of topics will be explored from a food science perspective such as grains, food preservation techniques, fermentation and pickling. Culinary techniques such as yoghurt making and blending spices will be demonstrated. Topics such as recipe writing, altering and adjusting recipes for special dietary requirements, reducing sugar and dairy alternatives will be explored.
- Sustainable Food Systems: current trends in sustainability will be discussed such as urban gardens, growing food in controlled environments and foraging. Key food industry issues will be explored such as food waste, origin of food, authenticity, seasonality and food policy.
- Practical Nutrition: students will be introduced to practical culinary skills in a professional kitchen environment with focus on a blend of classical and current techniques, food safety, kitchen organisation, and correct use of equipment. The practical culinary classes will emphasise healthy cuisine, global flavours, and students will learn a variety of practical techniques alongside sensory evaluation skills. The unit will cover a variety of topics such as food preservation, snack food innovation, seafood, cooking with underutilised ingredients
- Food Safety & Microbiology: successful completion of the unit certifies students to Level 3 Award in Supervising Food Hygiene in Catering, awarded by the (RSPH) Royal Society of Public Health. Food Safety is of principle importance in the study of food and nutrition for students to gain a clear perspective of the nature of food, safe food principles in preparation and production along with current food law.
- Food Business, Media & Marketing: introduction to the business aspects of the food industry to gain knowledge and skills of business practices and processes in the health food industry. Marketing, social media, brand development and nutrition in the media and business will be focal points of this unit.
- Nutrition, Communications & Research: is an integral part of the programme which draws on current nutritional research and provides an aid to the assessment process. Students will complete a series of assessments which cover all units of the programme.