Werner Schulz grew up in Zwickau, the son of an independent haulage contractor and former professional officer from a social-democratic dominated family. From 1964 to 1968, he attended the "Käthe Kollwitz" Advanced High School. His father forbade him to join the Young Pioneers. He received a degree in Food Technology at the Humboldt University of Berlin in 1972. From 1974 he worked as a research assistant working at the Humboldt University.