Faculty of Science

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2013 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

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FacultyFaculty of Science
Organisational UnitSchool of Chemistry
OfferedClayton Second semester 2013 (Day)
Sunway Second semester 2013 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Professor Gary Dykes (Clayton); Dr Siow Lee Fong (Sunway)


A detailed account of the chemistry of food substances will be provided. The components present in larger amounts (carbohydrates, fats, proteins, minerals and water), and those occurring in smaller quantities (colours, flavours, vitamins, preservatives, trace metals, both natural and synthetic toxins, and additives) will be discussed. Chemicals used in food production (fertilizers, pesticides, insecticides, fungicides, herbicides) and the chemistry of food processing, storage and cooking are also discussed. Methods used in food analysis are considered. The chemistry of the digestion of food and the energy provided by food during consumption are included.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Identify the essential chemical components of food and understand how they are analysed;

  1. Comprehend the chemistry of lipids, carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals and water as found in foods;

  1. Demonstrate an awareness of the relationship each of these food components have to nutritional needs;

  1. Understand the links between food types and energy provided, and between energy needs and balanced diets;

  1. Understand how agricultural methods affect food production;

  1. Understand chemical changes that occur during the processing, storage and cooking of food;

  1. Demonstrate an awareness of the importance of the food industry to the Australian economy and of the important role of food chemistry within the food industry;

  1. Undertake food analysis in a chemistry laboratory.


Examination (3 hours): 60%
Laboratory exercises and workshops: 20%
Assignments, tests and debates: 20%
Students must achieve a pass mark in their laboratory work to achieve an overall pass grade.

Chief examiner(s)

Contact hours

Three 1-hour lectures/tutorials and the equivalent of 3 hours of laboratory activity per week


6 points of level one Chemistry