Dairy Internship

Course content

The introduction period (initial 4 weeks):
The introduction period provides the theoretical and practical background needed before entering the internship placements. Teaching will take place both at University of Copenhagen and at Kold College in Odense.

The theoretical part will integrate current literature with exercises relating to theory and case studies. It will consist of lectures, theoretical exercises and discussions. The theoretical part of the teaching will mainly take place at University of Copenhagen, and will be given by a number of lecturers from University of Copenhagen and Kold College.

The practical part of the course will mainly take place at Kold College, in the dairy pilot plant equipped for manufacture of common dairy products, i.e. with access to standard unit operations and with specialized equipment for dairy processing. In addition, some teaching will take place in laboratories with instrumentation for analysis of milk and dairy product constituents and quality.

The practical part will have the following content:

  • Hands-on experience with the common unit operations used in the dairy industry.
  • Hands-on processing of common dairy products.
  • Practical experience with common analytical methods used in the dairy industry, e.g. milk constituents, microbial quality, spectroscopic methods and evaluation of product quality.
  • Practical experience with process control.


Internship periods (6 + 6 weeks):

Students will have to complete internships at two different plants.

All internships must be approved by Mejeripraktikudvalget (Dairy Internship Committee) [1], and the following rules apply to the choice of internship sites:

  • One of the internships must be at a dairy plant, i.e. a plant processing cheese, fluid milks, fermented milks, milk powder (including dairy ingredients and/or infant nutrition products), ice cream or butter and dairy spreads.
  • One of the internships should be at a cheese manufacturing site
  • One of the internships can be with an ingredient processor, process equipment supplier or at other relevant product manufacturing sites.
  • One of the internships can be outside Denmark.


Mejeripraktikudvalget can grant exemptions from the above subject to specific application and/or availability of acceptable internship sites.

Students should participate in the daily routines at the plant and should be introduced to as many individual processing and logistical steps as possible from raw material handling to final packaging. In addition, students must be introduced to the various services necessary for dairy processing, e.g. procurement of energy, cooling and handling of waste. Students could be assigned to participate in specific projects/problem solving at the plant.

Second teaching period and exam (final 4 weeks):
Teaching will take place both at University of Copenhagen and at Kold College in Odense.

Teaching will be focused on the connection between knowledge obtained during the introduction period and practical observations and experiences gained during the internship placements and allows the students to follow up and reflect upon observations and potential optimizations in specific selected production processes.

In the final part of this period, students will complete a dairy technology related project in the dairy pilot plant at Kold College and the final exam will be conducted based on this project work. 

[1] Mejeripraktikudvalget (The Dairy Internship Committee) is constituted as follows: One representative from University of Copenhagen, two representatives from Kold College, two representatives from Dansk Mejeriingeniørforening (the Union for Danish MSc graduates with a specialization in Dairy Science and Technology), one representative from the plants, one representative from the students and one representative from Mejeribrugets Arbejdsgiverforening (the Danish Dairy Employers´ Association). The committee grants approval of internships subject to an evaluation of whether students can be expected to obtain sufficient and relevant practical knowledge from a specific site.


MSc Programme in Food Science and Technology

Learning outcome

The teaching periods will provide students with competences to understand dairy chemistry, milk production and basic milk processing. 
The internships will provide students with competence to understand and analyse processing of dairy products and application of dairy ingredients.

After completing the Dairy Internship the student should be able to: 


  • Sum up the chemistry of milk constituents and their importance for the quality of dairy products
  • Sum up the various unit operations in milk processing and how they influence dairy product quality and process economy
  • Sum up how products are made at the visited plants
  • Sum up how milk and dairy products are analysed for quality at the plants
  • Reflect on the factors affecting milk production, milk composition and milk quality
  • Reflect on how unit operations affect product quality at the plants visited
  • Discuss the service functions necessary for the production


  • Ability to assist in manufacture of dairy products by operating common production and associated equipment
  • Apply principles from colloid chemistry and physics to analyse process flow of dairy products, to the various services necessary for dairy processing and to case studies relating to dairy processing
  • Perform the necessary calculations used in product standardisation and analysis of process economy
  • Evaluate problems associated to processing of dairy products
  • Participate in quality control and evaluation of cleaning efficiency
  • Reflect on the work flow in a production plant


  • Argue coherently and critically evaluate within the framework of dairy processing
  • Reflect and discuss factors of importance to dairy product quality from milk production to final products
  • Reflect on the role of dairy production and processing in society
  • Reflect on how to optimize a manufacturing process for more sustainable dairy products
  • Reflect on how the dairy industry interacts with the surrounding world
  • Reflect on the working environment at a production plant
  • Working in teams with diverse background

Lectures/seminars, pilot plant practicals, project work, dairy plant visits, on-site learning at production plants.

Will be provided during the course, either in physical copy or as links to electronical materials.

Academic qualifications equivalent to a BSc degree is recommended.

This course is reserved for the students in the MSc Programme Food Science and Technology.

Students who have completed the Dairy Internship and have obtained an MSc degree in Food Science and Technology with specialization in Dairy Science and Technology have the right to the title ‘Mejeriingeniør’

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Feedback by final exam (In addition to the grade)
Type of assessment
Continuous assessment
Type of assessment details
The exam consists of four parts:
- Assignments and reports during the initial four weeks period
- An individual test at the end of the initial four weeks period
- Internship reports from the two periods of internship at processing plants
- A final examination constituting a group report of the project work and an oral group examination (at the end of the second period at Kold College).

All parts of the exam must be passed to pass the course.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
passed/not passed
Censorship form
No external censorship
More than one internal examiner.
Criteria for exam assessment

See Learning Outcome

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 96
  • Preparation
  • 127
  • Practical exercises
  • 96
  • Practical Training
  • 444
  • Project work
  • 60
  • Exam
  • 1
  • English
  • 824


Course number
Programme level
Full Degree Master

2 blocks

6 months (30 ECTS) and consists of two parts:
- An introduction period at University of Copenhagen and Kold College in Odense
- Internships at two different dairy-related industrial processing plants
Block 1 And Block 2
6 months (30 ECTS) and consists of two parts:
- A theoretical and practical introduction at University of Copenhagen and Kold College in Odense (4 + 4 weeks full time).
4 weeks will take place prior to the periods of internship, and 4 weeks after the internship placements.
- Internships at two different dairy-related industrial processing plants (6 weeks at each plant).
No limitation
The number of seats may be reduced in the late registration period
Study Board of Food, Human Nutrition and Sports
Contracting department
  • Department of Food Science
Contracting faculty
  • Faculty of Science
Course Coordinators
  • Anni Bygvrå Hougaard   (4-7273797851778080753f7c863f757c)
  • Serafim Bakalis   (7-76757f75807d87547a838378427f8942787f)
Contact information: dairy@food.ku.dk

Various lecturers from Kold College and University of Copenhagen.

Saved on the 01-03-2023

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