Course Unit Page

  • Teacher Enrico Valli

  • Credits 6

  • SSD AGR/15

  • Teaching Mode Traditional lectures

  • Language English

  • Campus of Bologna

  • Degree Programme Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Sciences and Management of Nature (cod. 9257)

  • Teaching resources on Virtuale


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Zero hunger Responsible consumption and production

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

The objective of this course is to impart knowledge on the food technologies and unit operations having the potential to optimize the preservation of the nutritional and sensory properties, thus ensuring healthy, tasty, and sustainable food, even once it is processed. A deepening will regard the small and medium scale operations (minimal processing) that can be easily used also by farmers, small enterprises and in developing countries, in strict relation with the SDGs 2. A special focus will be on the innovative food technologies able to increase competitiveness, sustainability, circularity and diversity of local and typical foods. The teaching course will benefit of a strict connection with food companies, thanks to the planning of educational visit to plants, lab-scale production laboratories and training placements.

Course contents

Enrico Valli, junior assistant professor (fixed-term) at the Department of Agricultural and Food Sciences of the University of Bologna, is the teacher of this module. Technicians and other researchers will be involved in specific practical lessons.

At the end of the course, students will acquire applied technical knowledge on the relevance of sustainability issues for the food industries, with a focus on some selected food technologies/food chains as case studies. Students will be able to examine, interpret, prioritize and critically analyze the key sustainability factors of food processing, also thanks to practical exercises - e.g. open discussion of research articles - and laboratories.

The course consists in ten theoretical and practical lessons, educational visit to food plants and lab-scale production units, as well as other practical exercises, seminars and laboratories.


Lesson 1. Introduction

Presentations of the teacher and course contents.

Definition of food quality, genuineness, authenticity, security and safety.

Concept of food science, its areas and objectives.

Food composition and classification of food products.

The food chain and food law elements.

Lesson 2. Food technologies and sustainable development goals.

SDGs 2 and 12: where does food technology matter?

Brainstorming and searching for keywords: open discussion on research articles.

Lesson 3. Sustainable innovation strategies in Food Science

Introduction to sustainable food production.

A case study: meat products.

Current concepts and applied research in sustainable food processing.

Open discussion on research articles focused on innovative sustainable strategies in food science.

Lesson 4. Food waste valorization and recovery

Food waste valorization and recovery: definitions, prospects, opportunities and examples.

Open discussion on research articles focused on food waste recovery and valorization.

Lesson 5. Sustainable food processing technologies

Conventional, emerging and innovative sustainable food processing technologies.

Water consumption, reuse and reduction strategies in food technologies.

Open discussion on research articles focused on innovative sustainable food processing technologies.

Lesson 6. Sustainable meat processing

Lesson 7. Sustainable dairy processing 

Lesson 8. Sustainable processing of fruit and vegetable products 

Lesson 9. Sustainable brewing

Lesson 10. Sustainable seafood processing

Educational visit to food plants and lab-scale production units, as well as other practical exercises, seminars and laboratories.


Suggested sources (only some chapters or sections will be evaluated during the exam; sources in bold are more relevant. It is possible to request which pages you need to study by e-mail to the teacher)

Teaching methods

Lectures, seminars and practical exercises in the laboratory (food technologies instruments and equipments ). Whenever possible, there will be a final resume (in the last 10 minutes of class) of the main topics discussed during the lessons. Educational visits will be possibly organized to food industries in the Emilia Romagna region.

Assessment methods

The knowledge and skills taught in this course are evaluated as follows: written exam (six multiple-choice questions and two open-ended questions with a limited space available) and an optional 3 minutes oral speech focused on a specific topic related to the course content to be presented through a conceptual map or a storytelling video.

Online oral exams, through AlmaEsami (Microsoft Teams), are possible

Teaching tools

Blackboard, PC and projector are used as tools to support the teaching.

The teaching material consists of suggested books and presentations of the lessons in .pdf format that will be made available to students.

Students will have the possibility to prepare a conceptual map or a storytelling video.

Office hours

See the website of Enrico Valli