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R&D Manager


Northlake, IL, US, 60654

Job Type:  Food Science

Aspire Bakeries is a North American baking company with a leadership position in specialty frozen baked goods. Formed from leading bakery companies, its innovative food portfolio includes breads, artisan breads, buns, cookies, donuts, muffins and pastries from beloved brands like La Brea Bakery®, Otis Spunkmeyer®, and Oakrun Farm Bakery®. With 15 bakeries in North America, we are committed to driving innovation, predicting upcoming consumer trends and flavors, and exceeding our customers’ expectations. Aspire Bakeries champions the values of Integrity, Ownership, Customer Focus, Creativity and Care to help us deliver on People Safety, Food Safety, Quality and Collaboration.





  • Demonstrates a strong passion for food and innovation
  • Assists direct reports in planning and executing timelines in concert with the needs of customers and in line with current internal and external capabilities
  • Delegates work assignments, gives authority to work independently, and provide recognition for results.
  • Responsible for the day-to-day operation of direct reports and managing project team activities.
  • Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner, gathers and analyses information skillfully develops alternative solutions.
  • Responsible for helping ensure a seamless transition and sustainable quality of product from bench top to manufacturing to customer. 
  • Demonstrates expertise in running line trials and working with plant personnel, Operations and QA during the commercialization process.
  • Demonstrates expertise or willingness to learn in R&D equipment use and settings
  • Develops rapport with key customers and is dedicated to the team so the best understanding of needs and project requests are communicated clearly
  • Pursues training and development opportunities; strives to continuously build knowledge and skills; shares expertise with others
  • Adherence to NPD/BRC guidelines/GMPs
  • Maintains a high level of knowledge base regarding market trends and new ingredient opportunities through attending industry seminars, continuing education, trade shows, industry periodicals, and professional technical/culinary associations.
  • Demonstrates growth mindset in willingness to continue education with workshops, training, specific subject classes, etc.
  • Communicates with project managers to accurately maintain data generated in preparation and completion of requested samples.
  • Other duties as assigned.



  • AA/BA/BS in Food Science or related field required.  Additional culinary education preferred
  • 3 to 5 years of working as an industrial food developer is required.  Additional culinary development experience preferred.
  • Expert grasp of English (verbal and written) required.  Fluency in Spanish preferred.
  • Proficient knowledge of:
    • Skilled in Microsoft Outlook, Word, PowerPoint, and Excel.
    • Knowledgeable of SAP
  • Sound basic math skills required (addition, subtraction, division, multiplication, ease with fractions and decimals).
  • Ability to read and understand a basic formula.
  • Domestic travel up to 25- 50% of the time.



Aspire Bakeries is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or veteran status.