The R&D Manager will be responsible for the product development process. This position will execute the brand's culinary strategy inclusive of leading innovation, collaborating cross functionally, and developing and commercializing new and improved products and processes. The R&D Manager will be responsible for product development and delivery, and product performance and research to ensure products are on trend and help grow the business. This individual must be able to manage multiple developmental projects simultaneously, ensuring that milestones and deliverables are met.
- Identify, develop, and validate manufacturing processes leveraging both culinary arts and meat science knowledge to achieve new product, quality, productivity, and plant objectives.
- Manage timelines for all projects.
- Oversees the test kitchen as an effective vehicle for experimenting with new flavors and ideas, the development of new products, and the refinement of existing products
- Collaborates with Sales teams on the development and evolution of the customer menu strategy, along with strategies and innovation platforms for LTO, value and core menu innovation.
- Collaborates cross-functionally (i.e., Regulatory, Sales, Ops, Purchasing, FSQA and Finance) to effectively bring new products to life.
- Interact with all key business partners to ensure that product and sales initiatives and needs are fulfilled and to ensure balance between innovation and profitability on all R&D projects.
- Collaborates with Procurement team on researching new vendors/brokers for the sourcing of both new and existing ingredients and products; selecting suppliers that are capable of meeting product quality and product specifications in the most cost-effective manner; taking the lead on ingredient and product specs evaluations, along with quality assurance investigations.
- Development of formulas for new and test products and identifying and evaluating ways to generate savings and efficiencies related to the formula and ingredients in product.
- Delivers recipes and test sheets that can be consistently executed across all operating units. Partners with Marketing, Operations, FSQA, and the Sourcing team to test product quality and identify areas for cost and quality improvement. Coordinate and perform product and line trials as dictated by project and customer.
- Work closely with manufacturing to ensure that key operational and performance metrics are obtained for new product startups and productivity.
- Work closely with FSQA to ensure that key product requirements are identified and delivered leveraging scientific skills.
- Serve as the technical expert coordinating between, sales, marketing, procurement, finance, FSQA, and operations.
- One Food Scientist reports into this position at the plant.
Education / Skills / Experience
- Bachelor's Degree * B.S. or B.A. in Culinary, Food Science, or related degree required
- 5 + years of relevant meat industry experience (new products, formulation, process development)
- Knowledgeable in ingredient selection, formulation, processing equipment, and operating conditions
- Extensive technical and theoretical knowledge of meat science and manufacturing processes
- Ability to manage multiple projects and still meet critical project milestones
- Ability to make good decisions based on factual data, past experience, and common sense
- Strong project management skills
- Understands and uses design of experiment techniques
- Exceptional problem-solving skills
- Proficiency in the use of MS Office software including Excel, Word, and PowerPoint
- Knowledge of Cooking, smoking, chilling and freezing requirements and technologies
- Excellent communication skills (both written and oral) and the ability to interact with all company segments
- 401(k) Matching
- Dental Insurance
- Health Insurance
- Life Insurance
- Paid Time Off
- Relocation Assistance
- Vision Insurance
- STD / LTD
- Company paid Life Insurance