FB1AG2-Farm to Fork

Module Provider: Food and Nutritional Sciences
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites: This module is only available to Food and Nutritional Sciences students
Modules excluded: FB1FD1 Food Challenges for the Future: Production, Security and Health
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Emma Bennett

Email: e.j.bennett@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:

This module examines the factors affecting food quality from farm to fork and explores this along with other issues such as sustainability within the wider context of global food security. The module covers production methods for animals and plants, interactions with the environment, land use, sustainable food production, non-food crops and postharvest biology. Generic skills relating to formative assessment of key techniques applicable to degree-level study and post-study employment are also included.


To provide the student with a basic understanding of the food chain and the principles of food production covering plant and animal derived foods. The student will be provided with an understanding of how issues such as food security, sustainable crop production, food miles and different food production methods can affect the quality of food produced and availability to the consumer.

Assessable learning outcomes:

On completion of the module the student should be able to describe:

1. The generic principles of the food chain

2. The driving factors behind pre-harvest cultivation

3. Factors affecting sustainability and productivity in food production.

4. Methods of livestock and fish production 

5. Interaction between genetics and environmental factors in determining food quality

6. Post-harvest biology, packaging, storage

7. Career skills

8. How to write an essay

9. How to read a paper

Additional outcomes:

Outline content:

This module consists of a series of lectures, workshops and field trips covering the following topics; an introduction to the food supply chain, food security and food sustainability,  factors contributing to consumer perception of food quality, pre and post-harvest factors, plant and animal production methods the scientific method, academic study skills and career skills.  

Global context:

Food security is of global importance and the challenge of feeding a projected 9 billion people in 2050 is immense, particularly in the face of climate change and competition for land use for biofuel production. This module discusses the key issues and possible solutions and provides the students with the basis to make an informed opinion on how food should be sourced and supplied in the future.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The module will be primarily taught as (interactive) lectures. Flip lecturing will be used alongside podcasts and papers to give students time to assimilate knowledge and undertake blackboard based formative and summative testing.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 15 13
Seminars 1
Practicals classes and workshops 7 5
External visits 3
Guided independent study 74 82
Total hours by term 100.00 100.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 40
Oral assessment and presentation 30
Class test administered by School 30

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

  1. Essay Title (10%)

  2. Essay assignment (30%)

  3. In-class tests (2 tests - 15% each)

  4. Presentation (30%)

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Assessment requirements for a pass:

    Overall mark of 40%.

    Reassessment arrangements:

    Reassessment arrangements are in accordance with University policy. Reassessment of the written examination is held during the University administered re-examination period in August. Failed coursework may be re-assessed by an alternative assignment before or during the August re-examination period.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 12 December 2018


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