Product Development & Innovation Manager – Spices


ofi offers sustainable, natural, value-added food products and ingredients so that consumers can enjoy the healthy and indulgent products they love. It consists of Olam’s industry-leading businesses of Cocoa, Coffee, Edible Nuts, Spices and Dairy.

The Spices BU at ofi is on a strategic transition towards customer-centricity and innovation. The PD&A Manager will play a critical role in helping us excel in our sustainable growth and innovation efforts in the categories related to our product range (savoury, snacking & beverages, etc.). As we embark on our dynamic future, you will have accountability for the EMEA region and, together with other vital stakeholders, engage with our customers and develop innovative solutions.

Position Summary
As the Spices - Product Development & Innovation Manager, you will build and lead the customer-centric product development and innovation for the EMEA region in the categories related to our product range (savoury, snacks, beverages, etc.). You will be the Spices customer-facing technical representative with key stakeholders to drive sales. Our Key global and regional customers will value your category, technical expertise, and ideas for using Spices ingredients. Your contribution in innovation or productivity sessions will lead to new initiatives.

Your responsibilities in this role will be:

  • Lead the customer-centric product development and innovation in the categories related to our product range.
  • Work closely with Sales, Marketing and the other PD&I Managers at ofi in customer-centric collaboration to deliver pro-active initiatives based on market insights and trends.
  • Create and Manage a complex and dynamic project portfolio to ensure attainment of business goals, including prioritization and execution strategy.
  • Leverage consumer insights and emerging technologies to guide product innovation and renovation plans.
  • Lead the roll-out of the product portfolio and work actively with the sales team.
  • Continually coach and support sales teams for initial customer presentations.
  • Actively search for new leads within the category and built close relationships with customers to hear about potential projects or required support and translate this into value-add business, including technical and quality matters, which, in collaboration with Quality and R&D, will be taken care of in a fast and professional manner.
  • Lead in-depth customer discussions for product development and implementation
  • Lead product development and ingredient technology efforts to develop and commercialize new and improved products
  • Work with fellow innovation team members, including priority setting, coaching and skill development.
  • Share feedback of customers and escalate potential gaps or improvements in the current ingredient portfolio.
  • Participate in sessions with other PD&I team members locally and our global innovation centres to share knowledge, capabilities and success stories.
  • Share your vision and achievements by presenting and inspiring at all levels in the Spices organization.
  • Use CRM to monitor and act on customer activities. Use dashboards to make your progress transparent for yourself and stakeholders and proactively seek support if required.
  • Oversee the development of a complex portfolio of products, including guiding daily activity, adhering to timelines, and communicating project statuses
  • Organize and present status on projects while appropriately prioritizing activities based on business objectives
  • Proactively engage in problem-solving to fit the cross-functional needs of the business, including Operations, Marketing, Sales, etc.
  • Improve systems and streamline processes as needed
  • Perform other duties as assigned to meet the ongoing needs of the organization

Based in Koog aan de Zaan, The Netherlands and reporting to the Head of Sales.

Position Requirements

  • Minimum 6 years of experience as a customer facing Product Development/R&D Manager or B2B technical sales role in the savoury or snacking industy.
  • An MSc degree in Food Technology or Food Chemistry.
  • In-depth understanding in ingredient functionality working with complex food systems.
  • Proficient transforming ideas in bespoke and solution driven concepts.
  • Used to develop and maintain relationships with global or regional customers.
  • Confident to develop and give presentations to inspire customers at all levels as well as sales teams.
  • Proven leadership skills to transfer the growth aspirations of the company into a regional PD&I strategy with tangible actions and KPI’s explained and accepted by the different stakeholders.
  • Masters the food development process inside-out from customer inspiration to winning customer projects. Your understanding in ingredient functionality, great tasting product development, analytical methodologies and sensory science is best-in-class.
  • Entrepreneurial, agile, creative with a positive mind-set.
  • Passion for innovative ingredients, food or beverage products and technologies.
  • Has integrity, is inclusive and treats internal and external stakeholders with respect.
  • Has excellent communication and social skills. Listens well. Fun to work and open minded.
  • Proficient in spoken and written English. Other western European languages are an advantage.
  • The full-time role requires living close to Koog aan de Zaan.
  • This position requires travelling (10-20% post covid).

Are you the PD & I Manager – Spices  we are looking for?
If you are interested in this role and connect to the aforementioned profile, we will be pleased to see your application and CV via the application form. For more information about the vacancy you can contact us via + 3188-5678 323.

For recruitment agencies:

We have made a conscious decision to do the recruitment ourselves. Therefore, we kindly ask you to not forward any candidates, as we will not accept their applications.

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