Specialisation Food Law and Regulatory Affairs

This programme provides you with a solid legal foundation regarding key issues in food safety and food regulation at international, EU and national level, as well as questions of trade, consumer and intellectual property rights law.

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A unique programme to prepare you for an exciting career in the food domain

Background of the specialisation Food Law

The food domain is strictly regulated, at international, EU and national levels. Food regulation covers all aspects of production “from farm to fork”, including safety, hygiene, labelling, packaging, and, increasingly, sustainability aspects. This area of law also governs special foodstuffs, including organic products, genetically modified organisms, novel foods, food supplements and many more. 

Over the last decades, the complexity of these laws has developed in line with ever-more technical food production processes and increasingly sophisticated consumer demands. It is challenging for regulators, the food industry and consultants to create fitting regulatory regimes, and keep up to date with regulatory developments in order to mitigate legal exposure, and ensure compliance.

This is why graduates in Food Law and Regulatory Affairs are needed!

Alongside food safety concerns, the food regulatory framework incorporates a growing range of sustainability concerns. Graduates in Food Law and Regulatory Affairs will therefore play a pivotal role in adapting and reacting to legal changes in the food sector and in proactively navigating the unfolding and dynamic terrain of future food laws.

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Application & admission

Are you interested in this Master and do you want to know more information about the admission requirements? Read about the application and admission procedure.

Experiences from students

"I have found this programme absolutely fascinating"

Student testimonial

Student Alicja - Specialisation Food Law

"The way of teaching is unique and modern."

Student testimonial

Student Ioanna - MSc Food Safety

"The university is exciting and motivating."

Student testimonial

Student Alessandro - MSc Food Safety

Master's Food Safety: Specialisation Food Law and Regulatory Affairs

Wageningen University is the only university worldwide offering a Master programme that combines food law expertise with technical food safety components. For detailed information of the courses in this 2-year programme, you can view the study handbook.

First year

The core programme in the first year consists of courses in food law, food quality management, and food safety management. Depending on your background and preferences, you will follow additional mandatory and optional courses.

Course Natural science students Law/non-technical students
Food Quality Management
Food Law
Food Safety Management
Introduction to Law for the Life Sciences
Food Safety Economics
Basics in Food Technology
Food Hazards
Legal Transformation of Food Systems
Intellectual Property Rights
Comparative Food Law
International Food Law

Overview of the specialisation. Click image to enlarge.
Overview of the specialisation. Click image to enlarge.

Second year

The second year of the programme consists of independent research. During the first part of the year, you will write a research thesis, supported by faculty at the Law Group. During the second part of the year, you will undertake an internship in the field of food law at a company or organisation. 

Our internships typically take place with international food companies, international organizations or consultancies. International internships are supported by the programme.

Master Thesis – Law Group Database

Have a look at the database find out more about it!

Are you eligible to participate in the Master’s Food Law and Regulatory Affairs?

The Master is open to students with an undergraduate degree in Law or Food Science, but also students with a background in European Studies, Governance & Policy, as well as Nutrition and Health, Agricultural or Environmental Sciences, or other related programmes. Due to the range of previous degrees that qualify for the course, students with a legal background can learn from students with a technical background and vice versa. For graduates, it is of utmost importance that they can understand both the legal and the technical aspects of the food domain. 

Moreover, we are proud to have an incredibly diverse student body from all over the world, bringing a range of experiences and cultural perspectives. 

Employment outlook

At the moment there is an urgent need for food law experts. Our graduates work all over the world in the food industry, as consultants (in legal and food areas), in governmental organisations (including EU, WHO, EFSA), food inspection services and (specialised) law firms. Some also continue into academic careers.

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