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Associate Product Development Scientist

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Date: Aug 4, 2021

Location: Channahon, IL -Illinois, US, 60410

Company: Bunge

Bunge (NYSE: BG) is a world leader in sourcing, processing and supplying oilseed and grain products and ingredients. Founded in 1818, Bunge’s expansive network feeds and fuels a growing world, creating sustainable products and opportunities for more than 70,000 farmers and the consumers they serve across the globe. The company is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri and has 25,000 employees worldwide who stand behind more than 350 port terminals, oilseed processing plants, grain facilities, and food and ingredient production and packaging facilities around the world.


Manages and leads small to medium size projects to develop and introduce new products, improve product quality, productivity, process technology programs and capacity changes in Bunge North America. The incumbent has a major impact on the technical organization and provides high impact support to project teams. Innovation from idea generation through proof of concept to commercialization while creating new processes or operating procedures that lead to competitive advantage for Bunge. Works with Marketing, Sales, Procurement, vendors, co-manufacturers, consulting firms, universities, research organizations, and raw material and equipment suppliers. Manages up to three small to medium (product relocations, flavor extensions, base food improvements, promotions, food/ingredient news or moderate capital < 1 MM).


Essential Functions:

  • Assuming the role of innovator, project leader and technical problem solver teaming with cross-functional partners including other Technologists, Quality, Regulatory, Product Management, Marketing, Sales, Engineering, Operations, Procurement and Supply Chain.
  • Developing, managing, organizing, and coordinating projects while increasing level of understanding of products, processes and methods.
  • Being actively involved in innovation/customer solutions including process development, product formulation, design of unique unit operations and plant start-ups.
  • Participates in Market Research and Trade Show Support. Develop prototypes for applications that highlight fats & oils functionality while promoting current food industry trends.
  • Fully documents all project formulas and testing results and inputs customer test formulas and official formulas into Accolade formulation system.
  • Ensures that formula undergoes evaluation prior to customer testing. Works with Procurement to determine ingredient availability/cost information.
  • Determines critical ingredient specification parameters and communicate these to Quality and Regulatory. For new ingredients works with Regulatory and Quality to ensure sufficient information flow. Ensures ingredient approved prior to customer testing.
  • Schedules equipment and provide test plan to the pilot plant operations team for all scale-up and testing. Ensures adequate raw materials, resources, and timing for pilot plant testing.
  • Works with Quality and Regulatory to identify potential allergen and safety issues. Ensures these are communicated as early as possible to the team. Also confirms that nutritional requirements are met.
  • Sets up appropriate shelf life and sensory testing plans in accordance with the distribution and customer requirements of the product.
  • Works with Engineering to understand and define process needs and capabilities as they relate to the targeted production line. Provides tentative formula and processing parameters to plant engineering teams to support the development of the CAPEX package. Engineer in identifying issues and making preparations for plant testing.
  • Leads plant testing and startup preparation. Converts development formulations to production formulas.  Writes and issues plant test/start-up plans and effectively communicates verbally and in writing to stakeholders as appropriate. Executing the startup plan, addressing start-up issues, and participating in general startup activity. Attends and support daily team meetings and food and ingredient reviews during production startup
  • Submits test samples for chemistry analysis to generate nutrition labeling information and provides input to Regulatory to generate nutritional information to ensure product labels are correct.
  • Works with Packaging support personnel to coordinate testing as it relates to packaging material/food interactions, pack fit, and distribution.
  • Assists Quality and Operations in establishing the Quality parameters, specifications and supporting process documentation.
  • Works with cross functional teams to refine/optimize the process, reduce cost of goods, and resolve quality issues.


Competencies for Associate Product Development Technologist:

Technical Expertise

  • Makes recommendations on and develops new products and processes with some supervision.          
  • Often incorporates technology from other disciplines in the development of new products.
  • Maintains basic understanding of industry trends, competitor technologies, and regulatory issues.
  • Reviews and critically assesses market research trends and provides recommendations on customer requests.

Project Execution

  • Develops the plan for completing the product development phase of a project.   Provides significant input toward resolving conflicts in the project timeline.  Manages conflicts between timelines of different projects.
  • Able to develop test plans to execute small and medium project tests and startups with support.
  • Demonstrated ability to creatively solve problems that arise during plant testing and scale-up.
  • Has the ability to proactively plan for potential barriers and pitfalls before they happen.  Achieves objectives even in the face of major resistance & challenging obstacles.
  • Uses communication and documentation skills to influence project direction and product management.

Leveraging Resources

  • Able to proactively identify needs and develop both internal and external resources to meet them.  Coordinates activities of internal and external resources.
  • Identifies and coordinates resources to solve technical problems in an efficient and timely manner.  Sets performance goals and provides clear and specific expectations.

Business Understanding

  • Leverages competitive set and competitor technology differences to provide competitive advantage and uniqueness.  Able to analyze competitive products to ascertain processes and formulations.
  • Sufficient knowledge of other functions as to adequately represent their interests on project teams or technical support projects.
  • Remains well informed of state of the business in terms of net sales and market share as well as new product launches.
  • Leverages business knowledge to drive down project time/costs and anticipates obstacles affecting other business functions. Critically assesses and challenges other function's strategies as they relate to a project. Drives for continuous margin enhancement of new product portfolio.
  • Ensures communication between development team and supply chain to facilitate cost effective products.

Coaches & Collaborates

  • Gives general direction to assigned teams in accomplishing projects on technical & scientific investigation or developments.
  • Proactively shares technical and business knowledge to promote employee development.


  • Remains well informed of R&D and business strategies and provides input toward execution of the strategies. Is willing to contest product direction when justified.
  • Functions as an integral part of the R&D team, participating in the management and development of the department, selecting, evaluating, and prioritizing the project work.
  • Must function effectively as a project manager, planner, coordinator, communicator, and technical expert.
  • Takes a firm and confident stance to uphold Quality standards. Appropriately addresses both project and non­project related quality issues when encountered.
  • Continually strives to make improvements to key policies and processes within the department.


Skills/Experience Requirements:

  • Position requires Bachelor of Science degree in science or related field with 1-2 years of related experience OR a Master of Science degree in Food Science or related field with no experience.
  • The incumbent must possess leadership, cost consciousness, communication skills, and diplomacy that will promote good relations with all facets and other technical and scientific disciplines in the effective execution of projects to accomplish Corporate and Area objectives and demanding schedules.
  • This individual must be able to function effectively as a Project Manager, Planner, Coordinator, Communicator and Technical Expert.
  • Travel to, and work in, manufacturing or test facilities is typically required 10 to 30 percent of the time. International travel includes developing countries with exposure to additional stress relating to food, health and safety risks, and prolonged time away from home. Also, projects frequently require working beyond the normal workday hours, shift work, and on weekends. Operation of process equipment may be necessary.


Bunge is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, transgender status, national origin, citizenship, age, disability or military or veteran status, or any other legally protected status.  Bunge is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Minorities/Women/Veterans/Disabled

Nearest Major Market: Chicago

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