CHICAGO—The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) today launched its new Certified Food Scientist (CFS) program, a first-of-its-kind certification that provides food scientists an opportunity to obtain a specific credential that recognizes the applied scientific knowledge and skills these professionals have achieved.
Through the CFS program, food scientists will now be formally recognized for their experience and expertise so they can distinguish themselves throughout their professional careers. The program will also assist employers to identify, hire and retain the best talent, and to continue to meet the ongoing demand for knowledgeable food scientists throughout the food system.
The CFS program will also generate other benefits to demonstrate the professions' commitment to safe and quality foods for consumers; reinforce IFT's commitment to ensuring a strong talent pipeline to meet the scientific needs of the food science and technology community; promote lifelong learning to complement both academic learning and work experience; generate greater awareness of the food science profession; and build a foundation for ethical standards that will benefit the entire profession.
"Food scientists are critical to the creation of safe, nutritious and scientifically-based food products," said IFT President Roger Clemens, DrPH. "It is important for IFT to develop ways for these food professionals to differentiate themselves throughout their careers. Through the creation of the Certified Food Scientist program, food scientists will now be formally recognized for their experience and expertise, and can obtain the professional recognition that they deserve."
The International Food Science Certification Commission (IFSCC), a new independent, third-party certification body within IFT, will oversee the testing, governance and policymaking of the CFS program. The IFSCC will ensure the autonomy of the CFS program and provide appropriate oversight of the certification process. The CFS program governance, exam creation and administration are designed to meet standards of internationally recognized certification programs—the International Standards Organization (ISO) 17024.
To become a Certified Food Scientist, a food professional must complete an application and meet certain eligibility requirements. The CFS certification exam will be offered at more than 250 global testing centers. The first testing opportunity will take place in February 2013.