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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies : Veterinary Sciences

Postgraduate Course: Food Supply Chain & Food Safety (VESC11151)

Course Outline
SchoolRoyal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies CollegeCollege of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
Course typeOnline Distance Learning AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis course will provide students with high quality SCQF level 11 specialist skills to critically assess the economics of the supply chain and communicating the outcomes to a variety of stakeholders.
Course description Week 1 to 5: The Food Supply Chain and Food Safety course introduces the supply chain with examples on how food safety regulations, policy making and quality standards interact to shape it. It will demonstrate the importance of complying with standards for international trade and the overall economic burden to the society.

- Examples of food supply chains from the dairy, meat and fishery industries. Illustrations of the complexity of modern food chains, vertical coordination and transaction costs.
- The need for food safety regulations and how they operate (e.g. aspects that are covered, how the regulations are enforced).
- An important motivation for the use of safety and quality standards is the existence of information asymmetries as regards attributes that cannot be ascertained at the purchasing time. These standards can solve the problem of asymmetric information.
- Ways in which public and private food quality standards interact with each other.
- Compliance with food safety standards implies costs for producers, which can be fixed or variable.
- Private food quality standards has been supported by the development of quality meta-systems such as Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) procedures, Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) amongst others and increasingly such systems are seen as influencing the operation of the entire supply chain.
Means of analysing the costs and benefits of food safety interventions.

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  None
Course Start Flexible
Course Start Date 05/08/2024
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 98 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) A group wiki (built in Learn), focusing on the discussion of a case study (depending on the size of the cohort).

Report on the influence of food safety considerations on a food supply chain and its economic consequences at a national level (summative) 100%.

Feedback Lecturer / course tutor will provide feedback on the group wikis, which will help the students prepare for the summative assessment.

Lecturer / course tutor will provide marks and feedback on the report according to the marking rubric provided in the assessment guide.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate a critical understanding of the economics of food safety and how modern supply chains operate.
  2. Apply critical analysis and evaluation of information asymmetries about attributes that cannot be ascertained at the purchasing time.
  3. Be able to provide an overview of how food quality standards like the development of quality meta-systems such as Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) procedures, Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) amongst others are influencing the operation of the entire supply chain.
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Graduate Attributes, Personal and Professional Skills:
Knowledge and skills will include:

A. Research and Enquiry
Graduates of the University will be able to create new knowledge and opportunities for learning through the process of research and enquiry. This may be understood in terms of the following:
- be able to identify, define and analyse problems and identify or create processes to solve them
- be able to exercise critical judgment in creating new understanding
- be ready to ask key questions and exercise rational enquiry
- be able to critically assess existing understanding and the limitations of their own knowledge and recognise the need to regularly challenge all knowledge
- search for, evaluate and use information to develop their knowledge and understanding
- have an informed respect for the principles, methods, standards, values and boundaries of their discipline(s) and the capacity to question these
- understand economic, legal, ethical, social, cultural and environmental issues in the use of information.
B. Personal and Intellectual Autonomy
Graduates of the University will be able to work independently and sustainably, in a way that is informed by openness, curiosity and a desire to meet new challenges. This may be understood in terms of the following:
- be independent learners who take responsibility for their own learning, and are committed to continuous reflection, self-evaluation and self-improvement
- be able to make decisions on the basis of rigorous and independent thought, taking into account ethical and professional issues
- be able to use collaboration and debate effectively to test, modify and strengthen their own views
- be intellectually curious and able to sustain intellectual interest
- be able to respond effectively to unfamiliar problems in unfamiliar contexts
C. Communication
Graduates of the University will recognise and value communication as the tool for negotiating and creating new understanding, collaborating with others, and furthering their own learning. This may be understood in terms of the following:
- make effective use of oral, written and visual means to critique, negotiate, create and communicate understanding
- use communication as a tool for collaborating and relating to others
- further their own learning through effective use of the full range of communication approaches
- seek and value open feedback to inform genuine self-awareness
- recognise the benefits of communicating with those beyond their immediate environments
- use effective communication to articulate their skills as identified through self-reflection
D. Personal Effectiveness
Graduates of the University will be able to effect change and be responsive to the situations and environments in which they operate. This may be understood in terms of the following:
- appreciate and use talents constructively, demonstrating self-discipline, motivation, adaptability, persistence and professionalism
- be able to manage risk while initiating and managing change
- be able to flexibly transfer their knowledge, learning, skills and abilities from one context to another
- understand social, cultural, global and environmental responsibilities and issues
- be able to work effectively with others, capitalising on their different thinking, experience and skills.
KeywordsEconomics,food supply chain,information asymmetries,food safety metasystems
Course organiserDr Ruth Fowler
Tel: (0131 6)51 7374
Course secretaryMrs Emma Pineau
Tel: (0131 6)51 9198
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