From food scientist to product developer, there are a huge range of careers to discover if STEM + food is your jam.
Below, we take a peek at the CVs of four women in food science who are flexing their skills in retail, startups, research and biofuels.
1. Bonny Rawson, product technologist
Product technologist Bonny Rawson is a proud Ballardong Noongar woman, who discovered a new world of food via an airline corporate gig.
As a product technologist for Coles, Bonny Rawson works with a team to bring new choice to the supermarket aisle. “It’s great because I’m not just stuck in the office,” she says. “I love being able to travel and work with different people, from supply chain and category managers, to suppliers – big and little. I love being around food, and eating it!”
Check out the rest of her STEM story here.
Bonny’s study and career pathway
- Bachelor of Science (Food Science and Technology), Curtin University
- Career Trackers Indigenous Intern, Q Catering, Qantas Airways
- Student Mentor, Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience
- Mentor, CSIRO Young Indigenous Women’s STEM Academy
- Product Technologist, Coles
2. Skye Blackburn, entomologist & food scientist
Entomologist and food scientist Skye Blackburn launched her own startup to get bugs on our plates.
“I tried crickets, grasshoppers and bamboo worms in Thailand. They were tasty, although the worms were oily and a bit too spicy for me!” recalls Skye of her first taste of bugs.
When she got back from her holiday, Skye, who was already working as a food scientist (and had her own bug-based education business), made 1000 lollipops with insects like mealworms and scorpions inside them, and set up a stand at a pet expo. They sold out in an hour.
Read all about how Skye turned this idea into an edible-bug empire here.
Skye’s study and career pathway
- Bachelor of Science (Biological and Chemical Technology) (Invertebrate Biology), Western Sydney University
- Group Technical Manager, The Sydney Bakery Company
- Butterfly Skye’s, Butterfly Release and Insect Education Business
- Founder, Circle Harvest (formerly The Edible Bug Shop)
3. Professor Michelle Colgrave, food research scientist
Michelle is involved in a range of cutting-edge food science research. Some days she can be found testing foods involved with food allergy or intolerance to make sure it’s safe for people. Other days she’ll be looking at insects to see if they have the same proteins as seafood that cause allergy.
Suss out the rest of her STEM journey here.
Michelle’s study and career pathway
- Bachelor of Science (Analytical Chemistry), University of Wollongong
- PhD (Bioanlytical Mass Spectrometry), University of Wollongong
- Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Queensland
- Proteomics Research Scientist, CSIRO
- Professor of Food and Agricultural Proteomics, Edith Cowan University
4. Lucy Penna, chemical engineering student
Chemical engineering undergrad Lucy Penna is using a biofuel by-product to make sustainable, nutritious vegan food.
Biofuel is a type of renewable fuel made using plants. One of the ways it’s produced? Mustard seeds. Yep! The biofuel process leaves behind a pressed mustard seed ‘cake’ – and this is the focus of chemical engineering student Lucy’s work at the University of Adelaide.
Still in her undergraduate years, Lucy’s designing a machine to separate the protein-rich component of the mustard-seed cake to turn it into an affordable, nutritious and tasty vegan ingredient.
See what else she has planned for her STEM journey here.
Lucy’s study and career pathway
- Undergraduate, Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical) (Honours) / Bachelor of Science, University of Adelaide
Want more on food science? Check out nine amazing food and nutrition science career options to stick your fork into.
Author: Louise Meers
Louise is the production editor for Careers with STEM. She has a journalism degree from the University of Technology, Sydney and has spent over a decade writing for youth. She is passionate about inspiring young people to achieve their biggest goals and build a better future.