Sectors and Occupational Fields
Due to the wide range of academic training, nutritional scientists in Switzerland have access to a variety of professional fields:
- Research and development
- Institutions in the field of nutrition and public health
- Food industry
- Community catering
- Universities, universities of applied sciences and schools (including adult education)
- Public Health
- Nutrition communication (marketing, PR)
- Consumer protection
- Pharmaceutical sector
Within these sectors, nutritional scientists perform a wide variety of tasks. The following professional fields offer an insight into typical areas of activity.
Nutrition science as a discipline
Nutrition science is a multidisciplinary field of study. It deals with the basics, composition and effects of our food with the aim of guaranteeing health and pleasure through diet.
The comprehensive, scientifically oriented academic education therefore spans many areas:
- (Bio-) Chemistry and physics
- Anatomy and physiology of the human body
- Biology and microbiology
- Food technology and production
- Quality management and safety of food
- Dietetics and special nutrition over life cycles
- Statistics and research methodology
Nutritionists are therefore distinguished by their comprehensive knowledge and basic understanding of the various scientific disciplines. By linking these disciplines within the training, graduates distinguish themselves from other professional groups in the nutrition sector.
Public health promotion has been increasingly in the spotlight during the last few years, both at national and international level. Nutritionists are one of the most important professional groups in health promotion projects. They take the lead, identify risk groups, develop target-group-specific strategies and implement these in workshops, lectures or other appropriate measures.
Another field of employment for nutritional scientists is workplace health promotion. This includes, in extracts, employee training and consultation, the development of a health-promoting working atmosphere and the improvement of work place catering.
Marketing, product management and PR
In the food industry, pharmaceutical companies, community catering, public institutions and other health-related sectors, nutritionists are employed in the areas of marketing, product management and public relations. A high level of product understanding provides the ideal tools for planning and implementing marketing and sales activities. Nutritional scientists often take over internal (staff training) and external (press and public relations) communication and act as strategists and visionaries in product development.
Quality management and safety, food regulations and food safety
The area of responsibility of nutritionists in the food and pharmaceutical industry includes:
- Quality management and quality assurance
- microbiological, chemical and sensory tests
- Control of the final products and work flows
- regulatory affairs
- Product labelling (nutritional information, allergen labelling, etc.)
Furthermore, they are becoming increasingly important as independent consultants in the field of food safety, food hygiene and food law.
Editorial and journalism
In a time, in which nutritionally unfounded statements about the topic “eating and drinking” flood the media, nutritionists are indispensable partners for journalists. Whether as a reliable source for publications or as competent interview partners, nutritional scientists often act as authors themselves. One of the decisive tasks is the translation of scientific jargon into a language that can be understood by laypersons. The field of activity ranges from writing scientific articles to contributions for customer magazines (e.g. from health insurance companies or major distributors) and online formats, to books for different target groups. In this way, the increasing insecurity of consumers can be addressed in a scientifically sound manner.
Science and research
Nutritionists have sound theoretical and practical skills in the field of chemical analysis and scientific methodology and are therefore valuable employees in science and research. Their area of responsibility includes the conception, coordination and supervision of clinical studies, epidemiological and empirical investigations, for example in the clinical environment, in the pharmaceutical and food industry, but also in the public and university sector. From laboratory work to literature research and field research, the range of tasks in this professional field can vary greatly.
Do you have any questions or would you like to be a member?
We are happy to answer your questions at
SWAN – SWiss Academic Nutritionists
CH – 8123 Ebmatingen