Lead Bioprocess Engineer

Dairy cheese is unsustainable and plant based cheeses don’t work. At New Culture, we are making cow cheese without the cow. We are making cheese that is sustainable, that is healthy, ethical and indistinguishable from current dairy cheese in taste, texture and function. Using fermentation to produce dairy proteins, food science to combine those proteins with plant based fats and sugars and traditional cheesemaking methods to make any cheese of choice, we are bringing about a new culture for the cheese industry.

We are a San Francisco based, IndieBio startup that has recently completed our seed fundraising. We are now looking for a cross-disciplinary Lead Bioprocess Engineer to join us in our mission of producing animal-free dairy cheese. By being one of our first employees, you will have significant say and responsibility in determining the success and outcomes of New Culture. The ideal candidate is looking for a new challenge in a fast-moving collaborative environment and has demonstrated the breadth of experience in lab and pilot scale fermentation, commercial scale-up development and downstream processing in-house and at external facilities, ideally for protein and/or food production. 

What will you be doing:

  • Own New Culture bioprocess design and execution

  • Map the production strategy and 18 month milestone plan to deliver on set targets for product yield and recovery 

  • Perform techno-economic analysis (TEA) for our process and scale-up to pilot plant

  • Develop and maintain SOPs and project documentation

  • Ensure scientific quality for fermentation process development and optimization, including microtiter plate and bench scale to bioreactor scale-up and media development

  • Ensure tech transfer to CROs and work closely with them on pilot process scale-up and downstream processing optimization

  • Set up the lab/facilities in-house for fermentation and protein recovery and analytics

  • Design and perform in-house fermentation experiments

  • Identify, attract and recruit talent for the bioprocessing team

  • Manage, train and mentor junior scientists on the bioprocessing team

  • Ensure alignment with other areas of science and overlook the pipeline development

What we expect from you:

  • PhD in Bioprocess Engineering, Chemical Engineering, or another relevant engineering discipline and 3+ years of relevant industry experience (preferably in senior / leading capacity)

  • Hands-on experience with various types of fermentation processes (batch, fed-batch, continuous; aerobic and anaerobic), fermentation equipment and scale, and control software and analysis

  • Strong understanding of bioprocess engineering principles such as material and energy balances, fluid flow, heat and mass transfer, unit operations

  • Experience with downstream processing (centrifugation, tangential flow filtration etc), as well as downstream processing innovation and optimization

  • Experience with fermentation scale-up in collaboration with CROs and external partners

  • People and project management experience

  • Ability to deliver high-quality work under constraints of time and budget

  • Ability to work closely in a team of interdisciplinary and intercultural individuals

Even better if:

  • Research experience in protein biochemistry

  • Experience in analytical chemistry and characterization methods

  • Dairy and / or food science experience

  • Experience with Agile methodologies

  • Prior involvement with start-ups and/or small businesses

How to know you are a great fit:

  • You’re an avid learner, maker, doer

  • You’re a team player

  • You’re creative and resourceful

  • You’re kind, honest and empathetic

  • You’re driven by company’s mission and hungry to make a difference

  • You work hard

Please reach out to matt@newculture.co.nz with your C.V. if you wish to apply