The School of Food Technology, Nutrition and Bio-engineering at Makerere University is one of 3 schools in the College of Agricultural & Environmental Science. The school was formed from the integration of the former departments of Food Science and Technology, Agricultural Engineering and Forestry Engineering. This amalgamation enriched the human and infrastructural resources of the school. The school is committed to utilizing its human and infrastructural capacity to facilitate strong human resource training and innovations for the development of the agro- industry sector in Uganda and the region.
The School of Food Technology, Nutrition and Bio-engineering is composed of the Department of Food Technology and Nutrition, the Department of Agricultural and Bio-systems Engineering and the Food Technology and Business Incubation Center.
The Department of Food Technology and Nutrition provides training and research in food sciences, food technology and human nutrition. For over twenty years, the department has been at the fore front of training and research for the nascent food sector in Uganda.
The Department of Agricultural and Bio-systems Engineering undertakes research and training in the areas of Food Engineering; Soil & Water Engineering; Farm Power & Machinery; waste water and Environmental Engineering; Agricultural Processing Engineering; Forest Resources Management, Wood Science and Technology.
The Food Technology and Business Incubation Center is the first University based technology and business incubator in the East and Central African Region. The Centre was commissioned by H.E. President Y.K. Museveni, in 2009. The core business of the FTBIC is technology transfer and nurturing knowledge based enterprises in the food processing and nutrition fields. The Center targets youths and other groups with technology and/or business ideas of commercial potential in the areas of food processing, nutrition and allied industries. The Center’s program thrust includes:
- Nurturing new technology driven food and related enterprises;
- Promoting entrepreneurship among students and university staff;
- Offering technical support to the food industry;
- Technology transfer;
- Commissioned research;
- Process and product development;
- Quality management and troubleshooting;
TRAINING PROGRAMS AND OPPORTUNITIES AT THE SCHOOL
The school offers training the following programs
- Sc. Food Science & Technology (4 Years)
The program develops and equips students with competencies in the areas of Food processing, Food Chemistry, Food Microbiology, Food Engineering, Food Quality and Safety Assurance, and Entrepreneurship
- Sc. Agricultural Engineering (4 Years)
The program develops and equips students with competencies in the areas of Soil & Water Engineering; Farm Power and Machinery; Structures and Environmental Engineering; Agricultural Processing Engineering and Entrepreneurship.
- Sc. Human Nutrition (3 Years)
The program develops and equips students with competencies in the areas of Human Nutritional Biochemistry, Community Nutrition, Dietetics, Counseling and Clinical Nutrition, Food science, and Entrepreneurship.
The school offers masters and PhD programs is all the 3 B.Sc. disciplines.
The school is in the process of starting the B.Sc. Irrigation and Water Engineering as well as B.Sc. Bioprocessing Engineering.
Non-formal skills’ development (Short training courses)
These target entrepreneurs including recent school leavers. The training is aimed equipping participants with hands-on skills in processing different products in a business context. The training is run on a short module basis in the months of June-July every year in the thematic areas listed below.
- Processing of milk and dairy products
- Fruit & Vegetable Processing
- Processing of cereal products
- Processing of meat, fish and poultry products
RESEARCH FOR DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
Our research program focuses on addressing current development challenges and issues of strategic importance to Uganda’s agro-industry sector. The current research projects cover the following areas:
- Food processing and preservation, with special emphasis on improvement of traditional processing technologies
- Food chemistry including aspects of nutraceutical components of traditional foods
- Microbiology of traditional fermented foods
- Safety of street foods
- Effectiveness of nutritional interventions
- Nutrition status and food security determinants
- Water quality
- Heavy metals and pesticide residues in water and food systems
- Agricultural water
- Farm power
- Predictions for agricultural production
The school has several labs, an engineering workshop, a well equipped agro-processing pilot plant, a library, a computer lab, teaching and seminar rooms and a conference hall.
The School consists of 39 faculty, with expertise the areas of food science, food technology, human nutrition, wood science and technology, renewable energy, bioprocessing engineering, farm power, irrigation and water use technology. Teaching and research is also supported by over 20 highly trained and experienced technicians and graduate assistants. The School also works in partnership with experts and professionals in areas such as business management and marketing.
The school appreciates all its partners for their support to her programs. The following have provided substantial support to the school programs: The Government of Republic of Uganda; Government of the Royal Kingdom of Norway; NUFU; The Rockefeller Foundation; Thrasher Foundation; McKnight Foundation; Nestle Foundation; USAID; European Union; DFID; Dutch Government; Harvest Plus; International Foundation for Science; SIDA-SAREC; VicRes; BIOEARN; World Food Program; UNICEF; Association of African Universities; World Fish; We also enjoy close working relations with business support agencies, including the Uganda Manufacturer’s Association, Uganda Small Scale Industries Association and the Private Sector Foundation of Uganda.