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Research & Development Manager, Productivity & ACES
Louisville, CO


Job Family:

R&D and Sustainability


Louisville - Innovation & Technology


With our pioneering Horizon Organic, Silk, International Delight, Land O'Lakes and Earthbound Farm brands in North America and Alpro and Provamel brands in Europe, WhiteWave Foods has made healthy, alternative food choices mainstream, creating not just new categories, but a new consumer mind set. At heart, we are creators, engaged in the making of a new kind of Food Company. We are unique in possessing both the creativity and the scale not only to meet the world's emerging needs, but to shape them, and help define the future of food.

Our company's history is rooted in the spirit and principles of small food. But The WhiteWave Foods Company has the scale and resources of big food, which allows us to bring better food to more people.

As we experience growth, and as our portfolio of products grows, we maintain a constant focus on our environmental and social responsibilities. We pursue reductions against waste, water usage and greenhouse gas emissions throughout our operations, focusing on our plants and our company owned farms. We are also champions for food security, lending our support to national hunger relief organizations and those that operate in our local communities.



Reporting to the Senior Director of Productivity and Packaging, this position is a group leader of Research & Development’s Productivity and Cost Saving Team (aka ACES team). Incumbent is responsible for providing coaching and development of the team and ensuring projects are properly supported and delivered with technical excellence.

  • Advances business objectives by driving projects that deliver cost savings and sustainable excellence while ensuring all aspects of product and pack meet or exceed quality, cost, and sustainability requirements.
  • Partners with various stakeholder groups including procurement, product development, packaging engineering, marketing, supply chain and strategic and new vendors to meet annual cost savings and sustainability objectives.
  • Partners with the Sr. Director of Packaging and Productivity to identify and develop strategy and tactics to deliver AOP and SGP goals
  • Directly manages a team of 3-4 professional level direct reports to include technical guidance, project and business advisement, and coaching career development.
  • Partners with various stakeholder groups to develop comprehensive project opportunity lists and a robust three year pipeline of projects. 
  • Manages budget and tracks savings against monthly, quarterly, and annual objectives.
  • Review of existing products, packages and processes for cost optimization and sustainability opportunities
  • Executes lab and plant trials and train others to conduct lab and plant trials
  • Plan and execute test runs for the development of various prototypes in lab, pilot plant and at production facilities.  Maintain stringent documentation.
  • Source and maintain vendor relationships to secure the necessary ingredients and packaging that align with the Company standards
  • Assist in arranging sensory evaluations and consumer taste panels
  • Assure conformity to applicable standards
  • Assure successful commercialization of products meeting ACES objectives
  • All other duties as assigned




Education and Experience:

  • Bachelors Degree in Food Science, Process Engineering, or closely related field required. Strong preference for candidates with advanced degree such as Masters or PhD.
  • At least 7 years of relevant progressive research and development and/or production experience in CPG industry required.
  • Demonstrated examples of leading successful commercialization of food products from concept through commercialization required.
  • Previous experience managing a team of employees strongly preferred.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities: 

  • Position requires the ability to travel as needed, which could be 25-50% based on business demands
  • Advanced knowledge of food science principles and process, ability to lead complex projects from concept through commercialization
  • Beverage R&D experience helpful
  • Flavor chemistry experience and/or certification helpful
  • Food packaging knowledge helpful
  • Strong understanding of thermal processing
  • Excellent documentation and communication skills
  • Excellent math skills/conversions
  • Ability to work under strict deadlines
  • Ability to train others
  • Ability to work well with cross-functional teams


WhiteWave Foods is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. It is our policy to give equal employment opportunities to all qualified persons without regard to race, color, creed, religion, gender, genetic testing information, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, marital status, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, military service, status as a disabled veteran or Vietnam-era veteran, disability or any other consideration made unlawful by state, federal or local law. All employment practices and personnel actions, including hiring, termination, job assignment, compensation, discipline, and access to benefits and training are made without regard to any status protected under applicable law. It is our policy to select the most qualified person for each position in the organization, whether that is a new hire, a transfer to another position, or a promotion.


This policy applies to all persons involved in the operation of WhiteWave Foods, including, but not limited to, employees, vendors, customers and their employees, contract and temporary workers and anyone else on the Company's property.


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