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Food Management & Innovation


There is a need for urgent and fundamental changes to the way in which innovation and entrepreneurship education is delivered in Ireland today. An innovative and entrepreneurial perspective is particularly relevant within a programme on food management and product development. While Failte Ireland research has identified that food is not the primary reason for tourists to visit Ireland, 80% of those interviewed are "food positive" in other words a positive food experience can significantly enhance their experience. Therefore, according to Failte Ireland the focus should be on "food in tourism" as opposed to food tourism.

In recognising the importance of the food and drink sector regionally, Limerick City and Council recently launched a Food Strategy for Limerick (2016-2018). The research conducted in developing this Food Strategy for Limerick indicates that Limerick has many strengths in its food sector. Strengths include improved diversity in Limerick's food offer in recent years, a growing food producer base, new emerging food festivals and a growing enthusiasm from food stakeholders. However, the research also indicates weaknesses such as a small number of speciality producers with little evidence of 'joined up thinking' with regard to developing food. The Food Harvest 2020 is the Government's strategic vision for food development in Ireland which has recently been updated to Food Wise 2025 and identifies a number of key focus areas for the food industry in the next 5 years. Based on Food Wise 2025, the primary goals for the local food industry include increased value added output, greater consolidation and scale, higher profitability, an enhanced SME (small to medium sized enterprises) base, better targeted R&D and enhanced market responsiveness.

In considering the Irish food and drink sector in its broadest sense, the sector is both Ireland's most important manufacturing industry and the single most important category of consumer spending. According to IBEC (2016) the sector faces enormous challenges ranging from energy costs, commodity costs, labour costs to consumer costs, consumer demand and regulatory compliance costs. Responses to these challenges require significant input from a multiplicity of national departments and agencies including educator providers. However, the growth potential of the sector, an increase in exports to 12 billion, as targeted in Food Harvest 2020, can be achieved if these challenges can be addressed and the industry remains competitive and innovative. Consequently, this programme aims to align itself with the needs and objectives of industry by assisting in developing innovative world class Irish food and drink products. This programme is of particular relevance to graduates of business related disciplines.

Entry requirements

An honours degree (level 8) in a non-business or a non-cognate discipline or approved equivalent qualification.

Priority of entry will be given to applicants with a higher classification of award.

Recognition of prior learning (RPL) may be granted based on relevant experience and training in accordance with LIT's RPL Policy.


1 year, 17 hours per week.

Programme offered via blended learning mode, delivered through a mix of online lectures/content & classroom-based weekend lectures.

Number of credits


Further enquiries

For further information:

Dept of Flexible Learning

Tel: 061 293802


For academic queries:

Contact: Dr Catriona Murphy


Subjects taught


• Management of Food Science & Nutrition

• New Product Planning

• Food Marketing

• Sensory Evaluation

• Product Knowledge

• Gastronomy – the Sociology of Food

• New Product Development and Optimisation

• Food Innovation & Entrepreneurship

• Product Development Culinary Skills

• Food Industry Trends and Development


Qualification: Higher Diploma in Arts in Food Management and Innovation (Level 8).

Location: LIT Moylish

The target applicants identified for Springboard+ 2018 are:

1. Those in receipt of an eligible payment from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection.

• Those who already hold a National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) award at level 5 or 6 or equivalent, with a previous history of employment.

• Those with a previous history of employment who already hold a higher level qualification at NFQ levels 6 to 9, but who may require additional up-skilling or reskilling in order to re-enter employment.

2. Previously self-employed people

• Those at all qualifications level who may require new qualifications to return to self-employment or to enter employment.

3. Returners (i.e. Homemakers)

• Those who already hold an NFQ award at level 5 or 6 or equivalent, with a previous history of employment.

• Those with a previous history of employment who already hold a higher level qualification at NFQ levels 6 to 9, who may require additional up-skilling or re-skilling in order to re enter employment.

4. Those in employment

• Those who wish to up-skill or re-skill, to meet required skill needs across a range of sectors.

Places will be provided free of charge to those participants from categories 1-3 above. Level 6 courses are free to all eligible participants. In the case of category 4, level 6 courses remain free, but a contribution of 10% of the cost of the place will be collected by the provider for level 7-9 courses, with the HEA funding 90% of the course fee. This contribution can be paid by the participant or the employer. Please refer to individual course pages for pricing details.

Assessment method

Participants will be assessed using a mix of continuous assessment and examinations.

Course fee

This programme is free of charge for participants who are unemployed or previously self-employed. Participants who are in employment will be required to pay a fee of €750. Please see for eligibility criteria details.

Enrolment and start dates

Start Dates: Early September

Finish Date: Late August

Remember to mention gradireland when contacting institutions!