FDS208 Food Formulation and Characterisation (8)

FDS208 considers the influence of food formulation on the properties of food materials and how food materials can be characterised.  The role of food additives in influencing the stability, desirability, nutritional quality and digestibility of food systems is introduced, and instrumental and sensory methods for the characterisation of food texture, appearance, taste and aroma are studied.

No offerings have been identified for this subject in 2019.

Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Biomedical Sciences

Assumed Knowledge

Prior to undertaking this subject, students should have a content knowledge equivalent to:

CHM108 Chemical Fundamentals
MCR101 Introduction to Microbiology
FDS102 Introduction to Food Science and Nutrition
FDS203 Food and Nutritional Chemistry
(Desirable: FDS202 Food Microbiology)

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • Be able to critically discuss the role of additives in the formulation of foods to provide specified characteristics to a food product
  • Be able to explain the nature and mode of action of food additives for manipulating structure and texture, including thickeners, gelling agents, emulsifiers and foaming agents.
  • Be able to explain the nature and mode of action of preservatives for improving the stability and shelf life of food products.
  • Be able to select and justify the choice of appropriate instrumental methods for characterising commercially relevant physical attributes of a food product.
  • Be able to select and justify the choice of appropriate sensory methods for characterising commercially relevant sensory attributes of a food product.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Introduction to food formulation
  • Food systems and their physicochemical properties
  • Food additives and their regulation
  • The nature and mode of action of thickeners, gelling agents, emulsifiers and foaming agents
  • Preservatives in formulated foods
  • Food colorants
  • Instrumental methods for characterising physicochemical attributes of food systems
  • Sensory analysis of foods

Residential School

This subject contains a 3 day Compulsory Residential School.

The residential school will include a range of practical laboratory activities designed to enhance the learning of students. For example, students may:

" Measure the effect of pH and salt concentration on the water holding capability (WHC) of meat.
" Investigate the thickening and gelling behaviours of selected food thickening and gelling agents.
" Characterise the rheological properties of Newtonian and non-Newtonian liquid foods.
" Measure the effect of variation in water activity on the texture of selected foods.
" Assessment of wheat and flour quality using different techniques.
" Characterise foam and emulsion capacity and stability of model food systems.
" Examine the relationship between colour and texture in selected fruits or vegetables.
" Set-up and participate in selected sensory evaluation tests.


For further information about courses and subjects outlined in the CSU handbook please contact:

Current students

Future students

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2019. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.