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R&D Associate Food Scientist  (Job Number:  170000YF) - Englewood Cliffs, NJ




R&D Associate Food Scientist


Unilever's vision is to help people feel good, look good and get more out of life with brands and services that are good for them and good for others. Around the world Magnum, Lipton, and Hellmann’s, are chosen and used by consumers more than 150 million times a day. Worldwide, 173.000 employees in 90 countries are working for Unilever.

NA Dressings is one of the biggest within Unilever categories and brand worth about $1B. Unilever R&D Dressings in Englewood Cliffs, NJ is a major Regional Design and Deploy Center that supports regional brand innovation & renovation programs and Supply Chain Cost, Efficiency, and Quality improvement program.

Globally as well as regionally the Dressings category has an ambitious growth agenda and require continuous ongoing activities to assure business success.


Job Summary

The primary mission of the Associate Food Scientist is to act as Work Stream Leader (WSL) to support delivery on time all regional innovation, quality improvement, and cost optimization projects.

The position works in conjunction with regional cross category R&D teams, especially Regional Material Experts and Regional Specification Teams, and R&D Technical Project Leaders (TPLs). Further, the position requires working with cross functional team members within supply chain, especially with procurement, and marketing. The position also requires external (raw material suppliers) and international (Global Design Center, Global Material Experts, Global Specification Teams) communication.

The position requires application of technical knowledge and scientific methodology including bench top formulation, experimental design, analytical and statistical procedures and analysis.

The Associate Food Scientist will support and will be a part of a broader R&D development team.


Key Duties and Responsibilities


Possess sound basic knowledge of technical measurements and research methods and are able to analyze and interpret technical data

Basic appreciation of ingredients, formulation, process and product design principles

Design and execute lab experiments, pilot tests and plants as applicable to role

Basic appreciation of specification creation and costing

Basic appreciation of strict compliance to lab, ingredient and product safety and regulatory requirements

Build strong relationships across various R&D functions

Build competency in Product Lifecycle Management (PLM)


Project Management

Basic appreciation of Unilever project management principles and tools

Alignment of technical work plan with business priorities

Basic appreciation of the roles which cross-functional areas play in overall project execution


Safety and Ethics Compliance

Individual accountability at all levels; increasing level of responsibility for individuals with increase managerial roles.

Operates according to procedures and ways of working in line with Unilever frameworks, standards, and policies (SHE, SEAC, etc.), relevant regulations (i.e. FDA, USDA), Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) as well as Good Laboratory Practices (GLPs).

Adheres to all company policies, programs, rules, regulations, and safety rules.



Communicate thoughts in a clear and concise manner

Prepares routine technical data, reports and specifications

Participates in meetings with technical personnel (R&D team) offering suggestions and ideas

Communicates product development task timing and raises issues

Effectively present information and products to R&D audience/project team



Develops and maintains good working relationships with immediate team, customers and key stakeholders

Adheres to the principles of business conduct and diversity inclusion

Actively participates in team environment

Demonstrates flexibility to manage multiple priorities

Willing to give and receive feedback

Key interfaces/contacts:

a.          Regional Design and Deploy dressings groups and TPLs

b.          Dressings R&D managers and directors

c.           R&D cross functional teams: CTI, Microbiology, Pilot Plant, Culinary Team, etc.

d.          Regional and Global Material Experts and Specification Management Team

e.          Procurement and suppliers

f.            CTI and Culinary Team


Basic Responsibilities

·                  Development of new ingredients, flavored mixes and products

·                  Product costing

·                  Specification creation

·                  Application of product testing protocol

·                  Product feasibility testing at lab, pilot and factory scale

 Specific accountabilities of this role

·         Lead and deliver bench top product development for innovation or renovation projects based on product brief from TPLs (Regional Design)

·         Lead and deliver bench top product optimization, new ingredients or ingredients from new suppliers screening and validation for quality and value improvement projects (Deploy)

·         Lead the process of specification creation in SAP PLM from the request to the approved status and create specifications for all new ingredients and new products (Regional Design and Deploy)

·         Lead the delivery of Third Party Manufacturing Manuals for outsourced product launches/production to meet business needs (Regional Design)

·         Lead the Labels Approval Process in BLUE working with other R&D functions and ensuring compliance of technical elements in the artwork process (Deploy)

·         Participate in factory trials for commercialization at UL sites or 3PMs when required.

·         Conduct product showings/cuttings with cross-functional teams (e.g. culinary team and CTI), interpret results and suggests scientifically sound next steps (with appropriate assistance and support).

·         Lead projects where changes to design are needed to address Quality issues (complaints, incident or foreign matter reduction)

·         Stay current on competitor set and participate in the development and substantiation of claims and demos to drive technical differentiation

·         Identify improved ways of working and simplified processes


Key Requirements 


Minimum of B.S. in Food Science or relevant academic background with up to 1 years of experience including internships and Co-ops in a food and/or laboratory related position. 


Must have good computer skills should include Word, Excel, Power Point, SAP PLM experience is preferred.


The physical demands and work environment described here are representative of those that must be met by the employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job:

a.      The employee must be able to safely lift up to 50 pounds

b.      Flexibility in travelling up to 25% of the time

c.      Dietary restrictions or allergies clearly communicated as the role requires the ability to taste and discern differences across a wide variety of food products



Unilever offers a competitive compensation package which includes: Medical & Dental Plans, Life Insurance, including eligible spouses, domestic partners & children; Health Care Flexible Spending, Dependent Care, Retirement & Savings Plans, Tuition Reimbursement, Paid Vacation and Holidays.


Please note: as part of the job application, you will be asked to complete pre-screening questions.  Completion of the pre-screening questions is mandatory in order to be considered. Please allow yourself plenty of time to complete both the application and pre-screening questions.  If the pre-screening questions are partially answered or not at all, it will adversely affect the progress of your application. Please be aware that you will have to complete the pre-screening questions at once as you will be unable to return to it later. 


Unilever is an organization committed to diversity and inclusion to drive our business results and create a better future every day for our diverse employees, global consumers, partners, and communities. We believe a diverse workforce allows us to match our growth ambitions and drive inclusion across the business.


Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer Minorities/Females/Protected Veterans/Persons with Disabilities


Applicants and employees are protected from discrimination under Federal law. For more information, please see EEO is the Law.


Employment is subject to verification of pre-employment drug-screening results and background investigation.

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