Welcome to the Department of Food and Nutrition Consumer Sciences

Note: The final year in which a student can register for any modules relating to the National Dipl Consumer Science: Food and Nutrition is 2023. After this date, the programme is completely passed out.



Welcome to the Department of Food and Nutrition: Consumer Sciences. The discipline of Consumer Science: Food and Nutrition assists consumers in using resources to make healthy lifestyle choices. It highlights the need for a healthy diet and good quality, safe food. To produce active and reflective graduates with a sound knowledge of food and nutrition, the programme integrates the study fields of food and nutrition, whilst academic learning is complemented by the development of culinary skills, ethics, effective communication and critical citizenry. Students are required to complete a three month work integrated learning placement during the third year of study. This enables the integration and application of knowledge, as well as skill and value development in an authentic setting. Further study would enable graduates to perform as a food researcher and developer, manage a food operation or market food products in the retail and production industries. There is further scope to conduct research in the food and consumer science fields to enhance the quality of life of the consumer.

About Us



“A preferred provider of employable, innovative and socially responsible food and nutrition graduates.”



“ To facilitate student centred learning and applied research

In the science of food and nutrition

To serve society.”



1. Passion & Dedication

2. Excellence and Professionalism

3. Teamwork

4. Honesty & Integrity

5. Personal & Professional development

6. Social responsibility


The qualities required of you for this programme:

  • Passion for food preparation & nutrition
  • Creative and innovative ability
  • Ability to communicate effectively at all levels, verbally and in writing
  • Sense of responsibility
  • Self-motivator
  • Basic science ability
  • Service orientated
  • Team playing personality
  • Confident nature
  • Ability to relate well to people


Employment opportunities are in a variety of roles:

  • In food companies as customer development consultant in sales; in the marketing department including brand management and market research; in channel management; product development; recipe development; Fresh produce development technologist or a consumer affairs consultant.
  • In food retail, diplomates can fill positions in food buying, food product management, delicatessen manager, fresh product development and brand development.
  • In the media as cookery assistant, assistant food journalist, food stylist or co-ordinator of food promotions.
  • As freelancer: food stylist, food consultant or caterer.


Programmes offered by the department

  • ND: Consumer Sciences: Food and Nutrition
    Entrance Requirements
    A qualified learner will be able to develop recipes for fresh convenience food production and assist in food selection in a retail operation. He (she) will be able to co-manage food promotional strategies to contribute to the quality of life of the consumer. He (she) will also be able to co-manage a fresh convenience food operation.


  • Masters of Applied Science in Food and Nutrition

A qualified learner will have:

  • An in-depth knowledge of a specialized area in Food and Nutrition.
  • The ability to make an original contribution to science through scientific thought and independent investigation.
  • The proven ability to write scientific research papers for peer-reviewed scientific journal.


Entrance Requirements

  • No person shall be registered for the M Tech: Consumer Science: Food and Nutrition unless he/she is in possession of the B. Tech: Consumer Science: Food and Nutrition or equivalent.
  • A person in possession of a HDE (Higher Diploma in Education): Home Economics (UN) or a Bachelor Technology Degree: Food Service Management or equivalent, will be eligible to apply for the M Tech: Consumer Science: Food and Nutrition programme.
  • Entry into the M.Tech programme is not automatic. A limited number of places are available to students and selection will be on the basis of academic performance as determined by a ranking system. Working experience will be an added advantage for those students not applying directly from the B Tech.
  • Students are required to formally apply through the department should they wish to be considered for M Tech programme.
  • A qualified student will be able to conduct research in the food and nutrition consumer science fields to enhance the quality of life of the consumer. Please refer to Page 11 for the course offering.
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Food and Nutrition


Doctor of Food and Nutrition Entrance Requirements

  • See Rule G25(1) admission requirements.
  • Apply advanced knowledge, skills, principles and methods to conduct independent, original research and to render a specialized professional service in Food and Nutrition, according to the needs of the University, the country and in compliance with international trends and standards to:
  • Respond to the needs of the community
    Respond to the needs of business and industry
    Respond to the needs of consumers


Food and Nutrition Consumer Sciences Handbook





National Collaboration: 

  1. University of Zululand- COVID-19 study- The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on food consumption habits, food purchasing behaviour and food security status among South Africans 
  1. University of the Western Cape – NDOH45 National food consumption survey 2020-2022


International Collaboration:

Texas Tech University, USA: National EFBDGs development
Munster University of Applied Science, Germany: staff and student exchange
Hamburg University of Applied Science, Germany: COIL, visiting professors
Hague University of Applied Science: COIL
Amsterdam University of Applied Science: COIL
Nasseau Community College, New York: COIL



  1. DUT and McCain Recipe Development 2020: FFSC301

Third year students from the Department of Food and Nutrition Consumer Science participated in a project led by McCain; in celebration of their 20 years in South Africa.

Objectives:  Students are required to

As part of their birthday celebration, students were invited to:

  • Create delicious and nutritious dishes that are loved by South African families.
  • The recipe developed had to have a modern and healthier twist to SA’s favourite dishes
  • McCain products had to be the hero ingredients.
  • Dishes had to reflect a South African link.


Motivation for the meals developed had to include:

  • Findings from the survey conducted in the subject Food Communication III.
  • Literature search based on current food trends, a survey of existing popular retail meals aimed at the same target market needs and could include a review of competitor brand offerings.

Mr Jabulile Gwala  from McCain pitched the brief to the students.


  1. DUT and The SPAR GROUP LTD. Recipe Development 2020: FFSC401

FFSC 401, BTech  students  from the Department of Food and Nutrition Consumer Science  are currently participating in a project led by The SPAR GROUP LTD, for the development of application recipes using existing Smart Chef prepared meals to be used at Delis. Recipes will be launched at all regions at tradeshows.


Using the  Smart Chef Catalogue Prepared Meals section (Beef Lasagne, Bolognaise Mince, Boneless Beef Stew, Chicken a la King, Macaroni and Sauce, Mashed Butternut, and Creamed Spinach), students ae required to:

  • Develop standardised home meal replacement (HMR service department) recipes (including costings).
  • Conduct food Styling and photography.
  • Incorporate new trends that will  fit in the Spar market.
  • Recommend selling prices (RSP) and conduct competitor analysis in relation with similar products.


  1. DUT and The SPAR GROUP LTD. Recipe Development 2020: FFOS 401

FFOS, Advance Diploma students from the Department of Food and Nutrition Consumer Science will be participating in a project led by The SPAR GROUP LTD in the second semester of 2020.  The aim of the project is to develop unique recipes for the SPAR Bean Tree coffee shops/restaurant concept using the SPAR Smart Chef range.


Objectives:  Students are required to

  • Conduct formative research to determine recipes to be developed, through an online customer market survey, analyze the current menu and conduct a desktop review of current trend analyses.
  • Conduct recipe trials (x 3) and sensory evaluation of the recipes in order to produce a recipe that is consistent, delicious and looks attractive as meal.
  • Effectively communicate the recipes to the retailers.

The recipes should be:

  • Competitive and cost effective – Ideal GP % (for the norm) for food 55-60% (40-45% food cost) and beverages 60-65% (35-40% cost).
  • Quick and easy to prepare.

Student deliverable
s: Students are required to produce:

  • Standardized recipe
    – Accurate yield, method (including cutting boards and other equipment used).
    –  Image (styled photo of the product).
    –  Recipe costings considering cooking loss and including packaging.
    –  Include mostly SPAR ingredients and/or should be easily attainable.
  • Incorporate current food trends.
  • Trade presenter AND/OR Recipe Cards AND item menu presentation – Explaining or describing the concept behind the recipe.
  • Recommended Selling Prices (RSPs) and Competitor price analysis – in relation to similar products in the market.

Spar’s support towards the project:

  • Provision of Smart Chef product catalogue (electronically), recipe development template and color-coded cutting board chart.
  • Provision of all Smart Chef ingredients as the core recipe ingredients.
  • Guidance and support throughout the process as well as one opportunity to submit a developed recipe for online Fresh Studio costings (AI).
  • Experience in recipe development and a better understanding of the coffee shop/restaurant concept within retail stores.
  • Prices for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd

What will happen with the developed recipes:

  • Selected recipes will be loaded onto Fresh Studio – available to all stores to include within their menu offering.
  • Store implementation of recipes within their coffee shop/restaurant.
  • Customers would purchase and enjoy these unique



Community Engagement

The department is involved with Community Engagement in various forms including Community Based Participatory Research, service learning and community service.

Some of the projects include:


  1. Sisonke Siyaphambili (Child Welfare Durban and District)


The engagement is based on a participatory approach and the interventions planned with the centres are based on the Integrated Nutrition Program (INP) formulated by the Department of Health (DoH) which aims to address malnutrition through an integrated and focused approach. At present, these interventions involve activities coordinated by the DUT department representative and the residential care settings’ managers. These activities are: nutrition education and skills training of both the Child and Youth Care workers and children. The project’s focus is specifically on CYCWs empowerment to care for these children in the best possible way. The above-mentioned activities also enable the staff in the department and students to directly engage with the CYCWs and children about their food and nutrition concerns, needs and issues. It facilitates a substantive understanding of social problems amongst our students and enables them to develop their civic and leadership skills so that they can become agents for positive social change.


Child and Youth Care Workers at Child and Youth Care Centres

Children: aged 0 – 18 years


  1. Isolempilo Health Clinic


DUT students have over the past few years been involved with the Kenneth Gardens community, through community service learning projects. Here students visiting the clinic get advice on healthy eating and nutrition. This service compliments the helath clinic services which run daily on the Steve Biko Campus at DUT.


DUT students



Projects and Grants
  1. Acceptability, feasibility and effectiveness of a worksite intervention to lower cardiometabolic risk in India: 2019-2022. Collaborators: HEALIS, YALE and Harvard University
  1. Acceptability, feasibility and effectiveness of a worksite intervention to lower cardiometabolic risk in South Africa: 2020-2022. Funded by SAMRC. Collaborating institution: Yale University 
  2. NDOH45 National food consumption survey 2020-2022
  1. CSIR R&D grant: 2021-2022 -Impact of food literacy on household food waste 



For the back of house practical component of the subject food production management 1st, 2nd year Food and Nutrition Consumer Science students plan and prepare a range of menu items, on a large scale; to suit a target market. The planning includes management functions to complete costing, calculate profitability, distribute workload, problem solve, time management and optimise team dynamics. The need for innovation, food trends, hygiene and safety along with attention to detail, is emphasized.







Heleen Head of Department: Dr Heleen Grobbelaar
Tel: 031 373 2328
Email: heleeng@dut.ac.za
Campus: Steve Biko Campus
Qualification & Institution: PhD: Food and Nutrition, Durban University of Technology
Area of Expertise: Community Nutrition and Community Based Participatory Research


Noxolo Blose
Secretary: Miss Noxolo Blose
Tel: 031 373 2322
Email: noxolob@dut.ac.za
Campus: Steve Biko Campus
Qualification & Institution: N.Dip Office Management and Technology, Durban University of Technology
Area of Expertise: Office Administration


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