Sr. Innovation Scientist

Date: Apr 30, 2021

Location: Hilbert, United States

Company: Ornua Co-operative Limited

Job Description — Innovation Scientist/Sr.




Ornua Co-operative is an international dairy business headquartered in Ireland, world-renowned for its grass-fed dairy products and the proud owner of the Kerrygold brand. Ornua has a strong culture, dedicated to sustainable growth, fast paced innovation and development of its people. Ornua Ingredients North America (OINA) is a subdivision of Ornua and is a leading B2B supplier of cheese innovation.

OINA has an exciting opportunity to join its Research and Development team.  Our Scientists/Technologists collaborate closely with our customers, suppliers and their Ornua teammates worldwide to identify and implement best practice, to develop and commercialize cutting edge solutions for everyday problems and to participate in platform technology development.


Reports to:  Head of R&D and Innovation

Direct Reports: N/A


Required Qualifications:

  1. Minimum Bachelor’s degree in Dairy Technology, Food Science, Food Technology, or Food Engineering, Dairy Science, Dairy Processing, Chemical Engineering or closely related field with 3-5 years of research experience


Advanced degree (MS or PhD) with research orientation in the field of Dairy or Food Science with 1-2 years of industrial research experience.

  1. Solid understanding of fundamental dairy chemistry, protein chemistry and food science
  2. Solid understanding of food processing equipment operation preferably cheese processing equipment.


Other Preferred Qualifications:

  • Prior hands-on experience with natural and process cheese
  • Laboratory experience and experience in conducting scientific experiments and analyzing data helpful.  Project management and Six Sigma training or certification would be a plus.
  • Prior experience working with cross-functional departments, especially commercial team (Sales, Marketing, Product Development)
  • Pilot Plant / Manufacturing facility and/or Project Management experience is a plus.
  • Experience with designing and conducting sensory testing a plus.
  • Food Safety and Good Manufacturing Practices knowledge
  • Regulatory Compliance Knowledge (CFR and FDA guidelines)
  • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills and ability to develop effective action plans


Core Competencies:

  • Curiosity: Creates an environment for innovative and critical thinking, recognizes creative thinking and continuous improvement
  • Forward Looking: Leads others through change, and contributes to competitive challenges and functional strategic plans
  • Working Together: Ensures team effectiveness, facilitates and leads cross-functional working
  • Rigour: For complex challenges or new areas, applies effective professional skills, analysis and decision making
  • Communication: Applies advanced communication skills, considering impact on the audience and desired outcomes


Principal Duties:

Demonstrate sound understanding of the science and technology utilized by Ornua Ingredients North America.

  • Identify and lead opportunities to plan, formulate, and research the development of new products
  • Ability to review and lead modification efforts of existing products and processes
  • Expertise in review of current ingredient functionality in product to process commercialization and make recommendations based on evaluation and documentation
  • Manage projects both short-term and long-term, and working them through with cross-functional teams
  • Finding solutions through troubleshooting and testing new innovation via process and formulation that improve efficiencies, cost, and product performance
  • The incumbent identifies and leads project opportunities and plans, formulates, and conducts research to develop new products and processes or modifies existing products and processes in support of the Company’s goals and objectives
  • Evaluates multiple emerging technologies, equipment, or processes that have potential benefit to the company by designing and conducting tests, evaluating and documenting the results, and formalizing conclusions in written and presentation formats
  • Manages multiple projects of various degrees of difficulty as well as more complex and long-term projects that require sustained involvement and coordination skills across several divisions and includes multiple outside resources
  • Serves as a consultant for problem solving and provides technical and scientific advice and instruction
  • Collaborates with global peers and external partners as required to increase Innovation capabilities and impact.


Other Duties:

  1. Demonstrate adherence to the site’s Safety and GMP practices
  2. Attend monthly facility Safety training
  3. Assist with appropriate Risk Assessments upon request
  4. Assist with appropriate Accident/Incident Investigations and Right-to-Refuse Investigation
  5. Taste testing dairy products



Excellent Benefits available on Date of Hire:

•            Health, Dental and Vision Insurance with Flexible Spending Account

•            Company Paid Life Insurance, Short Term Disability and Long Term Disability Insurance

•            401k Retirement Plan with Company Match – (eligibility is after 30 days of employment)

•            Paid Holidays & Vacation

•            Paid Maternity and Paternity Leave

•            Paid Training Opportunities

•            Excellent Bonus Program


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