Process Innovation Pilot Plant Manager - CP Kelco

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Date: Mar 10, 2023

Location: San Diego, CA, US

Company: JM Huber Corporation

Portfolio Business: CP Kelco 

CP Kelco is a leading producer of specialty ingredients which are added to improve texture, consistency, and stability in food, pharmaceutical and industrial products. Our products are derived from renewable raw materials found in nature for use in jam, fruit and milk drinks, confectionery products as well as industrial applications. We work across the whole value chain from natural raw materials to customers’ end products. CP Kelco is part of the JM Huber Corporation, one of the largest privately held, family owned companies in the United States.  With approximately $3 billion in sales and 4,000 employees worldwide, we have a combined material presence in more than 20 countries.

Position Summary

The Process Innovation Manager is a key member of the Process Innovation Management team and drives long term process development within CP Kelco in close collaboration with Operations (Tech Ops) and other functions.

Principal Duties & Responsibilities

  •  You will actively drive CPK process development with internal and external partners to bring significant improvements to our production facilities.
  • High level coordination and prioritization of activities within Process Innovation together with the Innovation Management group.
  • Influence others within the organization to reach agreement and accept new practices and approaches.
  • Escalate issues to Innovation Leadership Team.
  • Ensure a high quality of research/development work, transfer, and implementation of relevant projects for CP Kelco.
  • Ensure fulfilment of accountability plans (consolidated CSFs for Process Innovation). Ensure cross-functional cooperation (GTI activities, QC, Manufacturing, Sales, etc.).
  • Lead, manage, motivate, and develop employees to meet business objectives. Ensure close cooperation with other functions and effectively manage communication.
  • Support ISO Certification. Always work in compliance with ISO requirements.
  • Ensure safe operation of pilot plants.
  • Participate in cross-organizational activities as defined in CSF plan, e.g., Programs, GTI and other projects. This can include project management, preparation of patent applications, presentation at conferences, etc.
  • Maintain a high level of safety and ethics, as well as environmental and quality standards in all aspects of the business. Follow procedures, e.g., QMA.
  • Stay updated on all CP Kelco products and processes both in theory and in practice.
  • Employee development – Ensure that the level of employee development, performance, talent management and succession planning meets the needs of CP Kelco. Evaluate performance vs. accountabilities (PATH reviews) of Process Innovation employees.
  • Administer cost to budget, suggest annual budget with strategic fit.
  • Business acumen – ability to transform commercial needs into technical programs and business opportunity, and drive these for execution.



  • Master’s Degree and/or PhD in natural science, chemical engineering or similar.
  • 5-7 years of experience in a similar role, experience interacting with customers and experience managing direct reports.
  • Previous process Innovation Experience ensuring that process Innovation employees actively collaborate with other Innovation departments to support Manufacturing, Innovation and Marketing/Business Development with new methods, technologies and products with focus on our hydrocolloids and participate in cross-functional projects to develop and implement results. Secure knowhow and connection with knowledge centers both internally and externally to make Process Innovation the preferred partner in new process development projects.
  • Formal training in people administration and development.
  • Communication in English, high level in speech and writing.
  • Strong team leader and team player. Good communication and motivational skills. Systematic in planning and organizing tasks. Result oriented
  • High level communication skills and ability to communicate effectively across different organizational levels and functions.
  • Leadership – Ability to lead diverse teams where resources may be deployed from different cultures, geographies, and functions.
  • Documentation Experience – Secure thorough documentation and filing of results in the form of concluded Work Requests and Technical Reports.
  • Previous QC and Manufacturing experience – Participate in problem solving and quality improvement, e.g., QI-projects, “off spec” material, complaints, etc.
  • Ability to deal with ambiguity and changing priorities

Salary range being offered is $111,000 - $148,000 depending on experience.


J.M. Huber Corporation is an EEO/AAP employer. Pre-employment drug screening is required.


Nearest Major Market: San Diego