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Physiological and Psychological Food Choice Determinants: P² Food

New offer in the process of being accredited - Training model subject to change

Opening date of e-candidate for the candidacy campaign of the year 2024-2025: March 15 to May 15, 2024.

Extended deadline to apply: May 22, 2024

e-Candidat tutoriel FR / e-Candidat tutorial english

You are interested in food sciences, and especially in studying why people choose to eat what they eat. You need to obtain professional skills in consumer behaviour and you wish to understand the factors involved in food choices.

You have always wanted to know…
-    How consumers choose their food
-    Why we eat food which is neither the best for our health nor the environment
-    Why people resist a change of diet
-    What influence stress and mood have on food choices
-    How cultural context can influence our food choices

This Master is made for you !


P²food is a 2-year, course-based, full-time international research Master's Degree focused on the physiological and psychological determinants of food choice, offered by the University of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté and l'Institut Agro Dijon.
Food plays a much bigger role in consumers' lives than simply feeding them. Each day, humans make several food choices. Their diet has considerable impact on their nutritional status and health, but also on the environment. A greater understanding of the reasons for consumers' choice of foods is needed in order to set up effective programs and develop new products, to improve dietary patterns in line with recommendations, and to increase food sustainability.
Although seemingly simple, food choices are complex behaviors that depend on many factors and their interactions. In this Master’s Degree, a key focus is placed on the physiological and psychological factors of food choice.

Our approach is student-centered and participative. It combines lectures, seminars and practicals, workshops and individual/team projects. The modules below are indicative of those offered in this program. This list is based on the current organization and may change year to year in response to new needs in the food industry.

The application procedure will run from March 15 to May 15, 2024 for all international students. The same dates apply for French students or international students holding of a French Bachelor’s degree.

Extended deadline to apply: May 24, 2024

  • Identity photo
  • Passport or identity card
  • Copy of the highest diploma obtained with the diploma supplement
  • For a degree in progress: photocopy of the year's transcripts and certificate of transcripts and certificate of completion (to be sent as soon as possible).
  • Photocopy of the transcripts of the 3 years of Bachelor and 1st year of Master
  • Cover letter in English including your expectation from this master degree
  • Curriculum Vitae detailed in English, including information on work placement
  • P2FOOD Supplementary Form
  • Copy of English certificate (if applicable)
  • Letter of recommendation (2 max) (in connection with the requested training)
  • Any document you wish to bring to our attention

Selection criterion

  • Have a Bachelor's degree in biology (cell and molecular biology; cell biology and animal physiology, general biology, neurosciences, etc.).
  • Students from other licenses must have followed specific modules or additional training:
    •  students from psychology, psychosociology: knowledge in food science and cellular neuroscience is required. The training courses taken to acquire this knowledge must be mentioned in the CV,
    • students from dietetic training: knowledge of the functioning of the nervous system is required. The training courses taken to acquire this knowledge must be mentioned in the CV.

Bachelors in food technology, food engineering, hygiene and safety quality, microbiology, and agronomy do not give access to the P2FOOD master.

  • Have a basic knowledge of food and / or nutrition.
  • Have a foundation in animal and / or human physiology
  • Have a level of English B2 or equivalent, at least
  • Have basic computer skills, be able to do simple operations and use basic functions in Excel
  • Have a basis of statistical analysis
  • Skills: ability to work in a group

Candidates for whom English is not their mother tongue or who haven’t done their studies in English will have to give a certificate to attest of their English level. The following tests will be accepted as a certification of the required English level :

  • CECRL : level B2 minimum
  • TOEFL : 87 points minimum
  • TOEIC : 785 points minimum
  • BULATS : 60 points minimum
  • First Certificate English of Cambridge
  • Bright Language Test : level 3 minimum
  • IELTS :  6
  • Duolinguo English Test: 110-125 minimum
  • EF SET 50 MIN (15 min not allowed) - LEVEL B2

Such a document is not necessary for candidates for whom English is their mother tongue, or who have validated a minimum of one semester in English during their Bachelor of Science. However, in both cases, the candidates must absolutely mention it in their application file.

Once the application file is considered as “complete”, several criteria will be taken into account for the selection
  • the university level (grades)
  • a strong interest for the sector adds value to your file. This interest can be shown by an experience in this field (internship, project, and experiences) and/or explained in the cover letter. This will be even more important if you are planning to take your studies back or change your field of study.
  • the professional project

Job openings

As a student in this Master’s program, you will gain in-depth knowledge about food properties and fundamental insights about human food behaviour. You will acquire sensory and consumer research methodology. You will come to understand the mechanisms of hunger, satiety and satiation, and the factors involved in palatability. You will study the influence of stress and mood on food behaviours, and explore the ways in which cultural context influences food choices. You will examine the importance of representation and consumer attitudes towards food, as well as the reasons for resistance to dietary change. You will understand why it is necessary to take on this issue in an interdisciplinary way.

This Master’s Degree aims at providing students with job-relevant competencies and skills for a career in industry (project leader or research engineer in nutrition; consumer science and R&D departments of international companies) or an academic position (food and consumer research; sensory and cognitive neuroscience research; food, nutrition and health research, etc.)


The master’s course comprise two mandatory internships, of 2 and 6 months. Internship can be held in a university, a research institute, a public institution, a company, a consultancy firm, an association, or a non-governmental organization.

In research labs and universities:

  • Implementing tasting sessions in nursing-home: impact on appetite and food intake
  • Brain-gut interaction on the regulation of food intake
  • Socioeconomic position and the effect of energy content labelling on self-served portion size
  • The Influence of odors on Food Exploration in Children
  • Social modeling: effect of vegetarian dining partner on omnivore food behavior
  • Representation of insect as food. A cross-cultural perspective


In companies:

  • Impact of vegan diet on taste perception and implication for product development
  • Implementation of solutions to reduce the intention - behavior gap in regimes to loose weight
  • Comparison of food practices of vegetarian and flexitarian people, using social-media
  • How do consumers define the concept of naturality?
  • Consumers’ Perception of Sugars and Sugar Substitutes

Students of master P2FOOD actively contribute to research projects during their internship.

During their internship, students of the master degree P2FOOD are involved in fascinating research projects about food choice determinants!

Here are some of the scientific papers co-authored by master P2FOOD graduates over the last 4 years:

  • Cappellotto, M., & Olsen, A. (2021). Food Texture Acceptance, Sensory Sensitivity, and Food Neophobia in Children and Their Parents. Foods, 10(10), 2327.
  • Chollet, S., Sénécal, C., Woelki, L., Cortesi, A., Fifi, V., Arvisenet, G., & Valentin, D. (2022). How protein containing foods are represented in memory? A categorization study. Food Quality and Preference, 96, 104381.
  • Fleury, S., Tronchon, P., Rota, J., Meunier, C., Mardiros, O., Van Wymelbeke-Delannoy, V., & Sulmont-Rosse, C. (2021). The Nutritional Issue of Older People Receiving Home-Delivered Meals: A Systematic Review. Frontiers in Nutrition, 8, 629580.
  • Garcia, A., Hammami, A., Mazellier, L., Lagneau, J., Darcel, N., Higgs, S., & Davidenko, O. (2021). Social modeling of food choices in real life conditions concerns specific food categories. Appetite, 162, 105162.
  • Guyomarc’h, F., Arvisenet, G., Bouhallab, S., Canon, F., Deutsch, S.-M., Drigon, V., Dupont, D., Famelart, M.-H., Garric, G., Guédon, E., Guyot, T., Hiolle, M., Jan, G., Le Loir, Y., Lechevalier, V., Nau, F., Pezennec, S., Thierry, A., Valence, F., & Gagnaire, V. (2021). Mixing milk, egg and plant resources to obtain safe and tasty foods with environmental and health benefits. Trends in Food Science & Technology, 108, 119–132.
  • Hedhili, A., Akinyemi, B. E., Otunola, G. A., Ashie-Nikoi, P. A., Kulkarni, M., Husson, F., & Valentin, D. (2022). Moringa oleifera Lam.: A comparative survey on consumer knowledge, usage, attitude and belief in Africa and India. South African Journal of Botany, 147, 153–162.
  • Marty, L., Franzon, C., Jones, A., & Robinson, E. (2021). Socioeconomic position, energy labelling and portion size selection: An online study comparing calorie and physical activity calorie equivalent (PACE) labelling in UK adults. Appetite, 166, 105437.
  • Merle, L., Person, O., Bonnet, P., Grégoire, S., Soubeyre, V., Grosmaitre, X., & Jarriault, D. (2019). Maternal high fat high sugar diet disrupts olfactory behavior but not mucosa sensitivity in the offspring. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 104, 249–258.
  • Naneix, F., Bakoyiannis, I., Santoyo-Zedillo, M., Bosch-Bouju, C., Pacheco-Lopez, G., Coutureau, E., & Ferreira, G. (2021). Chemogenetic silencing of hippocampus and amygdala reveals a double dissociation in periadolescent obesogenic diet-induced memory alterations. Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 178, 107354.
  • Oyinseye, P., Suárez, A., Saldaña, E., Fernández-Zurbano, P., Valentin, D., & Sáenz-Navajas, M.-P. (2022). Multidimensional representation of wine drinking experience: Effects of the level of consumers’ expertise and involvement. Food Quality and Preference, 98, 104536.
  • Poquet, D., Ginon, E., Sénécal, C., Chabanet, C., Marette, S., Issanchou, S., & Monnery-Patris, S. (2020). Effect of a pleasure-oriented intervention on the nutritional quality of midafternoon snacks and on the relationship between food liking and perceived healthiness within mother-child dyads. Food Quality and Preference, 84, 103947.
  • Schwartz, C., Person, O., Szleper, E., Nicklaus, S., & Tournier, C. (2021). Effects of Apple Form on Energy Intake During a Mid-Afternoon Snack: A Preload Paradigm Study in School-Aged Children. Frontiers in Nutrition, 8, 620335.


P2FOOD graduates also regularly co-author studies presented at international symposiums:

  • De Rosso, S.; Riera-Navarro, C.; Ducrot, P.; Schwartz, C.; Nicklaus, S. Qualitative evaluation, with French healthcare and childcare professionals, of a brochure containing the latest official child feeding recommendations to help prevent childhood obesity. European Childhood Obesity Group (ECOG) Congress, Budapest, Hungary, 11-12 November 2021.
  • Garcia, A., Hammami, A., Mazellier, L., Lagneau, J., Darcel, N., Higgs, S., & Davidenko, O. (2019). La modélisation sociale des choix alimentaires concerne préférentiellement certains types d’aliments: Étude des choix en restauration collective. Journées Francophones de Nutrition (JFN), Nov 2019, Rennes, France.
  • Poquet, D., Ginon, E., Sénécal, C., Marette, S., Issanchou, S., & Patris, S. M. (2018). Does a pleasure-based intervention at home improve the nutritional quality of mid-afternoon snacks in the mother-child dyads? 8th European conference on sensory and consumer research (Eurosense), Sep 2018, Verona, Italy. 1 p. ffhal-02789725
  • Sulmont-Rossé, C., Cadiou, E., Roger, A., Michon, D., Parizot, A. C., Gential, C. H., & van Wymelbeke, V. (2019). Développer des actions pour (ré-)engager les personnes âgées vivant en EHPAD dans l’acte alimentaire. Journées Francophones de Nutrition (JFN), Nov 2019, Rennes, France. hal-02787351