Senior Scientist, Fermentation

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

We are a Bay Area-based, venture-backed startup in an exciting growth and rapid expansion phase. We are looking for a Senior Scientist, Fermentation to join us in leading the global transformation to an animal-free dairy future. As an early member of the team, you will have significant influence and responsibility in determining the success and trajectory of New Culture. The ideal candidate is looking for a new challenge in a fast-moving, collaborative environment and has expertise in developing and optimizing benchtop fermentation processes with the understanding of commercial guardrails and requirements. 

What you will be doing:

    • Lead in-house microbial fermentation activities to improve yield, productivity, robustness, and scalability of New Culture’s fermentation process at benchtop scale
    • Propose, plan and prioritize robust experimental designs that align with team’s and company’s goals
    • Establish and execute high throughput strain screening, process development, and media optimization procedures using scale-down models such as microtiter plates, culture tubes and shake flasks
    • Identify, test, and implement novel technologies, equipment, software and other tools to optimize New Culture’s fermentation workflow when relevant
    • Mentor junior fermentation scientists and research associates; train new and existing technical stuff
    • Collaborate closely and seamlessly with strain engineering team on strain screening and improvement
    • Ensure alignment with other areas of science such as downstream processing and analytical chemistry Prepare SOPs and technology transfer documentation for internal and external teams and partners
    • Maintain fermentation lab safety and operation standards

What we expect from you:

    • Master’s or PhD degree in Microbiology, Bioprocess Engineering, Chemical or Biochemical Engineering, or related field with 5-10 years of relevant industry experience
    • Demonstrated technical leadership of various fermentation projects at bench-top scale
    • Expertise in bench-top fermentation equipment and principles
    • Extensive understanding of microbial physiology, cell metabolism, and fermentation principles
    • Experience with Design of Experiments (DOE) methodology
    • Experience with high throughput fermentation process development and media optimization in microtiter plates, culture tubes and shake flasks
    • Experience with data analysis and visualization tools such as Python, R, SpotFire, and/or JMP
    • Strong organizational and project management skills
    • Strong communication skills in a cross-functional team environment

Even better if you had:

    • Experience with fermentation process scale-up
    • Experience with regulatory filings for food applications
    • Experience with protein biochemistry and analytical techniques
How to know you are a great fit:
We look for candidates who are team players, learners, doers, and hungry to make a difference in the world. Creativity and resourcefulness, honesty and empathy go a long way. Our five core values guide us on our path to achieving our mission. 

Core values:

Determination with Kindness | Have the resolve, the drive, and the will to succeed, but do it with empathy, encouragement, and compassion. In the face of adversity we will only excel as a team by keeping kindness at the forefront of everything we do.

Tenacity with Transparency | Creativity, persistence, questioning, and crazy ideas to solve hard problems are essential to our work. We do all of this out in the open while being honest and forthright about the new things we’re trying, getting feedback and input from our teammates along the way. 

Teamwork with Rigor | Hold yourself and those around you to high standards and understand how your responsibilities are interconnected with others’. As much as you rely on your teammates, they’re relying on you, and only with consistent communication and rigorous teamwork will we achieve our goals together.

Speed with Focus | We move quickly, exploring new opportunities and incorporating new results to make progress rapidly. Remaining focused throughout our experimentations means making thoughtful decisions, listening to a range of perspectives, and moving forward as a unified team once we’ve committed to the path ahead.

Love the Product (not just the Science) | The science is cool but the product is even cooler. Our breakthroughs are always in the pursuit of better products. It’s by selling delicious dairy that we will bring about a successful future for New Culture and a positive impact for our customers and the planet.

New Culture is committed to promoting and creating a diverse, inclusive environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status. Diversity is the foundation of what we do at New Culture, enabling us to build a company that celebrates what makes each of us unique.