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At Premier Nutrition, we’re a team cheering on our customers every step of the way. Maybe it’s in the PowerBar right before a marathon. Or in a post-workout bottle of Joint Juice. So many athletes count on us for healthy and transparent energy products, and that’s why we need a team that’s dedicated to building the future of nutrition. So come take the first step toward a career built on winning.

Lead Scientist / Sr. Scientist, R&D

Research & Development


Job Details


Here’s what all the hype is about…

Premier Nutrition Company (PNC) distributes great-tasting food products to health-conscious consumers under the brand names Premier Protein, PowerBar, Supreme Protein, and Joint Juice and part of publicly traded BellRing Brands (NYSE:BRBR). With its people-first culture, PNC empowers its people to create the best work of their lives alongside some truly amazing colleagues. We strive to make a workplace where you can feel like you and avoid many of the outdated prcesses and structure of convential workplaces. We don’t have performance reviews—we have conversations. We don’t have command and control management—we have inspiring leaders to coach you. We don’t have a casual dress code—we simply don’t have a dress code; wear what you like. And we have a lot of fun.

Bringing dogs to work, company-wide volunteer days, philanthropy and sustainability programs, in-office massages, walking meetings, and free daily excercises class on-site and at the adjacent gym are just a few ways we make work feel less like work. And the results of our great culture speaks for itself: we were certified as a Great Place to Work™ for the third year running in 2019 and ranked #7 on Fortune Magazine’s 2019 Best Small & Medium Workplaces in Manufacturing & Production.

So, what’s it like to work here? You’ll walk into our Emeryville office each Monday morning and find 100 of your colleagues sitting on sofas, beanbag chairs, or the floor excitedly talking through the week ahead and watching one of their colleagues tell their personal life and career journey. Picture the scrappy culture of a start-up, the innovative mindset of a tech company, and the stability of a brand that sold over $800 million last year, and you’ll find us in the sweet spot where world-class culture meets robust business results. PNC seeks individuals who will thrive in this collaborative and casual work environment and will help us build our culture and this high-growth company for the next phase in our amazing journey. Does this sound like you? Then read on…

The Role…

This is a mid-level R&D position (working technical expert and entry level R&D leader role - leading 1-3 direct report(s). This position will provide product development expertise and technical oversight to specific PD projects and lead 1+ direct report(s)- scientist and/or technician roles. The Lead Scientist / Sr. Scientist will demonstrate joint accountability (with R&D LT) for project success, by ensuring appropriate technical execution of assigned projects with internal R&D alignment and cross-functional partnerships.

You’re excited about this opportunity because your time will be filled with…

PD - Technical leadership and critical thinking: 80% of Time

  • Responsible for technical execution of all assigned projects and ensuring adherence to R&D SOPs, practices and alignment with R&D LT (individual contributor 80%; accountable for technical execution of direct report(s) 20%).
  • Takes active role in discussions and alignment on project scope, deliverables, brief, project timelines and milestones.
  • Responsible for product compliance (food safety, ingredient usage, NLEA information, product claims) against internal and external standards (FDA, USDA, and third party certification) through collaboration with regulatory, QA, marketing and other parties.
  • Identifies areas for R&D exploratory work (e.g. building blocks), cost savings (e.g. margin management) and/or continuous improvement and will develop R&D plan to execute.
  • Provides technical expertise to solve problems on ingredients, formulations, processing, sensory and consumer testing. Maintains up to date knowledge of ingredients and technology. Leverages vendors and suppliers, professional network, individual research.
  • R&D People leadership and culture: 10% of Time

  • As entry level R&D leader, and with guidance of R&D LT member(s), will lead direct report(s):
  • Ensure successful completion of projects and balance workload of direct report(s).
  • Contribute and maintain a positive and enthusiastic environment of technical excellence, innovation know-how, consumer insight, entrepreneurial spirit all within high trust and integrity.
  • Inspire and engage direct report(s); Apply situation leadership and embrace coaching with radical candor; identify when/how to set up safety net so that failing forward is part of mindset.
  • Influence and leadership skills: 10% of Time

  • Ability to influence LT, ELT and co-workers across organization
  • Build cross-functional partnerships
  • Represents RD function, advocates for RD resources and provides insights, solutions and critical thinking as necessary.
  • What are we looking for?


  • BA/BS Food Science, Food Engineering, Biological Sciences, Chemical Engineering or similar disciplines.
  • Advanced degree in a related field is preferred.
  • Experience:

    Lead Scientist:

  • 10+ years of Ready-to-Drink (RTD) beverage experience with hands-on experience in Product Development, formulation, labeling and claim Substantiation; Validation through analytical, sensory testing and shelf life testing; Commercialization at co-man facilities.
  • 0-3+ years people management.
  • Formulation expertise in dairy (milk and dairy proteins), gums, stabilizers, clean label and non-GMO is preferred
  • Sr. Scientist:

  • 7+ years of Ready-to-Drink (RTD) beverage experience with hands-on experience in Product Development, formulation, labeling and claim Substantiation; Validation through analytical, sensory testing and shelf life testing; Commercialization at co-man facilities.
  • 0-3+ years people management.
  • Formulation expertise in dairy (milk and dairy proteins), gums, stabilizers, clean label and non-GMO is preferred.
  • Skills:

  • Demonstrated hands-on PD skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work effective in team environment through excellent interpersonal, influencing and communication skills (both written and verbal)
  • Ability to excel in dynamic fast paced business environment, demonstrated ability to self-motivate and manage multiple priorities and PD timelines and milestones.
  • Communicate technical details to business (effective translation of technical info to business language) to drive decision making
  • Demonstrated presentation skills to ensure understanding at various levels of organization, including LT.
  • Travel- 20%
  • Excellent skills in R&D Tools (Genesis, TraceGains) and MS Office Suite.
  • Five capabilities that differentiate this role and are key to candidate success:

    1. Emotional intelligence
    2. Being all-in
    3. Adaptability
    4. Embody a strategic mindset
    5. Bring people along

    You will thrive here and may just do the best work of your life if…

  • You want to be an integral part of shaping and nurturing an amazing work culture
  • You like trying out novel minimum viable product people-related ideas
  • You can be flexible in your approach to people challenges and abandon past practices if they don’t make sense or would lead to a poor outcome
  • You enjoy making people-centric decisions and finding ways to say ‘yes’ as often as possible to impactful and important priorities for the business or team
  • You are comfortable being natural, casual, open, and even a bit playful at work
  • You can be friendly, vulnerable, and self-deprecating in one moment, and deal with a challenging, delicate people-related matter as a professional in the next
  • You can do periods of focused, deep work on projects that drive the needle
  • This may not be your ideal next career move if…

  • You like a lot of structure, rules, and uniformity
  • You like order, hierarchy, command and control management
  • You want to build lots of processes, systems, governance, or policies
  • Dealing with ambiguity or experimentation are not your jam
  • You try to resolve challenging interpersonal situations over email or instant messaging
  • You like managing from behind your computer and demonstrating excellence through email
  • You tend to chase whatever shiny object presents itself during the day even if non-strategic
  • If we haven’t convinced you to apply already, here are some of our favorite perks and benefits:

  • Summer hours (and of course a hefty PTO package plus 11 holidays).
  • 401K match. Literally free money.
  • Free food. Plus kombucha, cold brew coffee, sparkling water…all on tap.
  • All people and roles are bonus-eligible.
  • Quarterly team building events/happy hours (city-wide scavenger hunt, bowling, ropes course, putt-putt).
  • Bring your dog to work (3 days/week).
  • Premier Nutrition provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, marital status, status as a covered veteran and any other category protected under applicable federal, state, provincial and local laws.


    Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities

    The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)

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