Professional conduct

Code of Professional Conduct

Our members are bound by a Code of Professional Conduct. As food science and technology professionals, every member gives an undertaking to:-

  1. Uphold the integrity of the food science and technology profession, and refrain from conduct which detracts from its reputation
  2. Comply with current regulatory and legal requirements with care, and follow best practice to ensure the safety of food
  3. Develop and maintain my professional knowledge and skills, and work within the limits of my knowledge, competence and skill
  4. Act in a fair, honest, trustworthy and diligent manner
  5. Take reasonable steps to ensure my professional judgement is not compromised nor perceived as being compromised because of bias, conflict of interest, or the undue influence of others
  6. Consider the risks and implications of my action (or inaction) and advice, and hold myself accountable for them and for the impact these may have
  7. Treat information with appropriate confidentiality and sensitivity
  8. Raise any concern I have about the conduct of an individual or organisation likely to put the safety or health of the public at risk

(agreed by our Board on 19 January 2017, effective 14 March 2017, reviewed 7 April 2022)

Reporting concerns

Any allegation of a breach of the Code will be investigated and may lead to disciplinary action being taken against a member. The Disciplinary Procedure governs how the investigation and disciplinary hearing will be conducted and a range of possible outcomes, including expulsion from membership in the most serious cases.

You can report any concerns you have about a member. Contact us in confidence.

You can also report suspected dishonesty or criminal activity in the food chain or a food business by using the Food Standards Agency's Food Crime Confidential reporting facility:

Post-nominals/designatory letters

We take our role of protecting the public very seriously. Post-nominals such as MIFST, FIFST, CSci, RSci, RSensSci, RSciTech, RFoodSPrac, RFoodSM, and RFoodSP denote professional achievement and demonstrate to our peers and the general public that we are qualified and competent professionals.

Use of any of these post-nominals by people who are not entitled to use them is misleading. Misuse risks eroding the confidence of the public in the food sector and bringing IFST into disrepute. Inappropriate use of our post-nominals may breach the Code of Professional Conduct. Examples of inappropriate use include (but are not limited to) using post-nominals on a company nameplate, website, email signature, leaflets, letterheads or in information supplied to the public or an employing organisation.

Allegations of inappropriate use or misuse of post-nominals are investigated by the Membership Team and may lead to disciplinary action.

If you believe you have seen improper or misleading use of post-nominals, please contact us via

Our Commitment

All IFST employees, board and members involved in any of the Institute's activities are expected to follow this policy and its practical implications.

Anti-bribery and fraud

In upholding our ‘independent’ value, we prohibit any employee or person working on our behalf to offer, give, request or accept any bribe i.e. gift, loan, payment, reward or advantage, either in cash or any other form of inducement, from any person (or anyone connected with the person) or a company in order to gain advantage in a way that is unethical. Any acts of bribery or attempted bribery should be reported to the Chief Executive.

Gifts and hospitality

No gift or offer of hospitality should be accepted by an employee or anyone working on our behalf without receiving prior written approval from the Chief Executive.