Job Properties
  • Job Type
    Full-time Position
  • Background
    Other Science and Tech
  • Languages
  • Experience Required
    1 - 2 Years
  • Degree Required
    • Province
      7,247 reviews
    • Date Posted
      February 22,2021
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    Microbiological Modeller

    A better business. A better world. A better you.

    LOCATION: Global Foods Innovation Centre (HIVE), Wageningen

    WORKING HOURS: Full-time


    Are you passionate about data, modelling and food safety? Would you like to contribute to the transformation of the food system by being a key player in the design of microbiologically safe and stable plant-based foods? Then look no further!


    Unilever is one of the world’s leading suppliers of Food, Home Care, Personal Care and Refreshment products with sales in over 190 countries and reaching 2 billion consumers a day. It has 161,000 employees. Over half (58%) of the company’s footprint is in developing and emerging markets. Unilever has more than 400 brands found in homes around the world, including Knorr, Dove, Hellmann's, Lipton, Wall’s, PG Tips, Ben & Jerry's, Marmite, Unox, Magnum and The Vegetarian Butcher

    At Unilever we have set out to make a difference to those big issues that matter most to our business and to the world. Our goal: transformational change at system level. Fundamental change to whole systems is needed if we are to make a genuine difference. Our transformational change agenda combines direct action on the UN Sustainable Development Goals with partnerships and external advocacy to create change on a systemic scale – while creating business opportunities and delivering relevant innovations at the same time. Our purpose-led, future-fit Unilever Compass strategy is guiding us and is built on three beliefs: brands with purpose grow; companies with purpose last; and people with purpose thrive.

    Now, welcome to R&D, Unilever’s ideas factory. Unilever R&D has built the Hive, a new Global Foods Innovation Centre in Wageningen, the Netherlands. In this way Unilever creates critical mass in expertise areas to ensure that our new technologies ultimately bring breakthrough innovations to the markets that are good for People and Planet.

    It is Unilever’s ambition to reach 1 billion turnover in the next 5 to 7 years from plant based products of which plant-based meat is a significant part. To achieve that ambition, we are strengthening our technical capability and therefore we are looking for people with specific skills in this area.


    The Science & Technology (S&T) team in the Foods & Refreshment (F&R) division is an agile team of enthusiastic world-class scientists with a clear purpose:

    • We are indispensable partners in F&R who deliver competitiveness through science and technology

    • We unlock the world’s ecosystem to solve problems for today and create inspiring opportunities for tomorrow

    • We build on each other’s strengths to magnify our impact

    We combine key capabilities across the end-to-end spectrum of food science, biotechnology & engineering with unique knowledge on flavour & formulation sciences, all underpinned by digital modelling capabilities, to deliver differentiating innovations to market that meet consumer needs every day.

    The S&T team has a passion for continuous learning, works according agile principles with a strong can-do mindset.

    THE JOB:

    As a Unilever Microbiological Modeller, you will support new product development through data analysis and building predictive models to support microbiological risk assessments, to assure the safety and shelf-life stability of our current and future sustainable Foods & Refreshment (F&R) product portfolio, and in particular for the development of even more sustainable meat replacers for the Vegetarian Butcher. This is a critical business need as digitally-enabled microbiology can: (1) provide the unlock for the F&R Division to maximise value from data (faster innovation, less testing, cost efficiencies), (2) assure robust microbiological design of F&R products using computer-aided systems, and (3) provide a solid quantitative basis to perform microbiological risk assessments. Together with an enthusiastic team of microbiologists, you will play a key role in implementing the strategic digital microbiology agenda across F&R in close connection to global and regional design centres.


    • Manage the current predictive microbiology knowledgebase in F&R R&D (data & model capturing/structuring) with a main focus area in meat analogues and plant-based foods.

    • Support the development of new predictive microbiology models: (a) identifying and applying new techniques and modelling approaches to ensure in silico capability for our plant-based product portfolio, (b) providing clear recommendations for data requirements for the development of the models, (c) clear model documentation (transparent & reproducible).

    • Microbiological risk assessment for design centres and supply chain support (e.g. for incident and process control), R&D support (e.g. product development) and Design of Experiments (DoE).
      Execute agreed programme, provide expertise in predictive microbiology & ensure effective alignment with different product category groups, working with colleagues in product development & process science multi-disciplinary teams.


    • At least BSc in a quantitative subject such as applied mathematics, biostatistics, computational biology, data science or similar subject matters.

    • Expertise in quantitative microbiology, with track-record of data management and statistical data analyses informing microbial risk analysis (e.g. using PowerBI, JMP, R, Python, SPSS)

    • Proactive team working; ability to engage more broadly than just within the R&D science & technology area e.g. product developers, supply chain, quality managers.

    • Good influencing and communication skills; ability to convince and defend own science-based knowledge in front of internal stakeholders (within R&D).


    • Opportunity to work on brands with the power to brighten peoples’ lives all over the world.

    • Be part of a diverse and ambitious team shaping the future of Food and Refreshment brands.

    • Exciting career opportunities & competitive benefits in a global, purpose led business.

    • We are looking for the right people for our roles and our ambition, we are open to talk about how our flexible working policies can make this role the right one for you.


    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.


    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.

    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.

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