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1 year ago   Medical & Healthcare   Wageningen   2K views Reference: 807
Job Details



Location: Unilever Wageningen (HIVE) The Netherlands


Travel: 5-10%

Innovation Technologist - Foods, GDC

About Unilever

Unilever is one of the world`s largest Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) businesses, with interest across Personal Care, Homecare, Refreshment and Foods product categories. We make products that people love and that make a difference. Nutritious foods. Household care essentials. Indulgent ice creams. Refreshing teas. Luxurious shampoos. Affordable, disease-combating soaps... and many more. In fact, we make around 400 much-loved brands including global brands such as Knorr & Dove, but also local brand such as Calvé (the Netherlands) and Suave (the Americas). Shoppers buy them in more than 190 countries. That means youll find at least one of our products in seven out of ten households on the planet. And we want every one of those products to make a positive impact on the lives of the people who buy them.

We want our business to flourish, and we know that our success depends on others flourishing around us. That's why our purpose is to make sustainable living commonplace, and why sustainable, long-term growth is at the heart of our business model.


The Global Design Centre (GDC) Innovation team leads the Global R&D for Food products and is key business partner with Global Brand teams to drive and land Global Innovation Big Bets with impact and scale. The GDC Innovation team drives innovation of new product solutions in horizon 1 & 2 spaces to meet unmet consumer needs. We create proprietary technologies, science-based solutions, core formulation designs and digitally embedded tools to deliver superior benefits and value to our consumers through our products. We also lead the transformation of our biggest product portfolios towards more healthy, sustainable, and flavourful offerings at affordable costs. Driving easier shifts to more plant based and diverse diets for our consumers is central to our purpose. The Innovation team leads the streams on delivering material, recipe, and portfolio efficiencies. They partner with local markets to drive superior execution of our products via strong selling stories and product experience toolkits.

The GDC Innovation Technologist works on innovation projects supporting the Technical Project Leader (TPL) in developing winning products and consumer solutions as per the brief and scope agreed with the business. The Innovation Technologist develops new product and process solutions via experimentation, application and analytical assessments and is responsible for proper documentation needed for safeguard and transfer of technology. The role reports into the Innovation Manager having the following responsibilities.

There is a vacancy in both the dressings innovation and the scratch cooking & snacking innovation team.


Product Development: New product development via translating ideas first into lab and pilot scale prototypes to finally scalable, cost-effective, shelf stable recipes and Core Formulation Designs in line with technical insights, consumer expectations and nutrition, regulatory and Intellectual Property guidelines.

Design of Experiments (DOE): Develop an experimental plan in consultation with the Technical Project Leader and conduct firsthand experiments in kitchens, laboratories and the pilot plant, analytical tests and measurements, application in ways of product consumption to draw inferences.

Data Analysis: Conduct a thorough analysis of the data derived through the DOE, build on the inferences drawn from the experiments and plan future course of action.

Product characterization: use appropriate measurement techniques to characterize key attributes of the product, using either existing or developing new techniques in partnership with Analytical team or external labs.

Process development: establish appropriate process technology, either existing or new in partnership with processing team for manufacturing a product to specification at lab-scale and pilot-scale.

Process scale-up: partner with processing team to establish technology developed at pilot-scale to enable commercial production and support factory trials

Idea generation: brainstorming and engaging with internal and external ecosystems for innovative ideas focused on consumer or business problems for innovation as well as product / pack / process optimizations.

Shelf-Life Stability: Plan and conduct shelf-life studies to establish shelf-life of new products and/or intervene through formulation/recipes to enhance shelf-life.

Product & Consumer safety: Partner with TPL to review and design product and consumer safety standards within existing technology designs or consult SEAC & Microbiology teams for products falling outside the safe design parameters.

New Material solutions: Partnering with material expert, technology, and processing teams and / or external ecosystem to identify or build new material, process, and technology solutions to create higher consumer value, benefits, and affordability in our products.

Knowledge based Selling: Partnering with Chefs & Consumer Insight teams to create content and demos for Knowledge Based Selling via lab & kitchen experiments supporting product claims and communications.

Operational Responsibilities:

Organizing tasting sessions and supporting consumer panel evaluations.

Arranging shipment of samples to internal and third parties.

Responsible for the maintenance of equipment and adhering to working procedures.

Ability to train others in working with related equipment.

Ownership of upkeep of lab and product storage rooms.


Professional Skills

Foods product and process development

Building and executing experimental plans

Conducting standard food analytical measurements

Data analysis, assessments, and technical reporting

Food science and technology expertise

Ingredient functionality and application knowledge

Application and cooking recipe development

Basics of product and design safety in processed foods

Working knowledge of existing Unilever IT tools PLM, ELN, LV8 & Minerva.

Working knowledge on MS Office Excel, PowerPoint for data analysis, visualization, and presentation.

Fluency in written and spoken English is a must.

Basic awareness on commercial aspects of business, finance, marketing, regulatory and legal.

Basic awareness on project management and agile WoW and tools.

Personal Skills

Consumer centricity and a passion for addressing consumer pains through product solutions.

Technical mindset, creative and critical thinking with an affinity to find out of the box solutions.

Ability to seek, mine and process information from internal and external sources

Influencing, and building external and internal networks.

Confidence in making presentations, demos and sharing the output of their work with others.

Excellent team player with the right aptitude for working in a multi-cultural / regional environment & with strong communication skills.

Ability to multitask, work on multiple projects with different TPLs and organize own work agenda and set priorities.


The role is a mix of desk based, laboratory, pilot plant and occasionally factory activities.

Occasional travel to attend factory trials, supplier qualification, consumer research, etc. is part of the role.

Tasting is part of the daily routine.


Professional education, Bachelor/HBO preferably in Food Technology, Food Science, Product Design, Food Engineering, Processing, or related areas. Masters in these fields would be considered a plus.

Previous experience of working on product and process development ideally in a foods company.

What do we offer?

Unilever is the place where you can be yourself and bring your purpose to life with the work that you do creating a better business and a better world. We offer an exciting & dynamic work environment where you can make things happen. Furthermore, we offer some great reward and benefits!

Attractive total remuneration package; excellent company pension, bonus, share scheme

Flexible cross-disciplinary career opportunities and a wealth of training opportunities & wellbeing resources whenever and wherever

Plenty of company-paid holidays to further ensure your work-life balance is maintained

We encourage an inclusive culture, which comes to life with interchangeable public holidays, paid paternity leave of 6 weeks and our transgender policy

Working in a hybrid way: combining working from home and collaborating at office locations are at your customer or supplier. If your work permits, you may work from home for 60% of your time. We have good arrangements for setting up your home office.

Informal culture and being the first one trying our new products

My Fitness Plan (reduction on your Fitness Subscription)

Green Mobility Policy

Note: Deadline for applying is 23.59 the day before the Job Posting End Date.

Excited about the role?

Join Unilever and our team! To apply, you must do so online. Please do not forget to upload your CV and a motivation letter. Your application will be reviewed against our requirements and we will be in touch shortly after the closing date to provide you with an update on the status of your application.

Looking forward to meeting you!

Please note this is a Direct Search led by Unilever. Applications from agencies will not be accepted, nor will fees be paid for unsolicited CVs.


Equal Opportunity Employer: Unilever 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, national origin, or any other basis protected by applicable law, and will not be discriminated against on the basis of disability.

By highlighting the gender diversity at the workplace, Unilever encourages women equally men to apply. If you look for a job after a long career break or after any type of leave, do not hesitate to apply.

Company Description
We are driven by our purpose: to make sustainable living commonplace.
Established over 100 years ago, we are one of the worlds largest consumer goods companies. We are known for our great brands and our belief that doing business the right way drives superior performance.

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