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Customer Innovation Manager – Dairy, AAK Netherlands

AAK is the world’s leading producer of value adding vegetable oil solutions in close collaboration with our customers. AAK’s proven expertise in oils & fats within food applications is based on more than 140 years of experience. During Food Ingredients Europe 2015, held in Paris, AAK won two gold medals for best bakery and best confectionery innovation. To maintain our leading position within the world of vegetable oils, we are always looking for well-educated, innovative, highly skilled, committed and caring employees to join AAK.

AAK’s work is very much built around our customers’ businesses and we firmly believe in long-term partnerships and strong relationships. Through our unique co-development approach, we work together with our customers and across their value chains to develop solutions that fulfill customer-specific needs. If you’re looking for a challenging and stimulating career centered around improving other companies’ businesses, an AAK career is what you’re looking for.

As Customer Innovation Manager Dairy you will work very closely together with our sales organization and also be part of AAK’s European Customer Innovation Dairy network. You will work in close cooperation with customers and colleagues to develop and optimize products and applications. That includes a lot of customer meetings to identify customer needs and to build up technical relations. You will act as the technical specialist for your customers and provide solution implementation, trouble shooting, and assist with other technical issues when needed. You will also be active in the solution development in AAK’s dairy pilot plants and labs which are located at our Dairy Customer Innovation Center in Karlshamn, Sweden.

• Responsible for mainly Western European markets as the technical specialist in the value adding vegetable fat based ingredients to the ice cream and dairy industry, covering applications like whippable toppings, cheese, butter blends, ice cream fats and ice cream coating fats
• Identifying, initiating and driving customer-specific projects and developing tailor-made products and solutions in line with the latest scientific and market developments
• Supporting AAK’s customers by providing technical advice on processes and recipes and validating product specifications
• Supporting the global team in identifying new opportunities
• Acting as the liason between AAK’s customers and internal departments, i.e. production, planning, QA, and sales
• Supporting/organising technical seminars for customers and providing training for colleagues
• Working closely together with global and regional sales colleagues, visiting customers and representing AAK at trade-fairs
• Reporting to the Head of Customer Innovation.

• Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Food Science, Food Technology, or equivalent
• Several years of relevant experience within a food company, preferably in the field of dairy processing and applications
• Good technical knowledge of (dairy) food ingredients and their applications in relation to current market developments and demands is required. Knowledge of (vegetable) fats and oils is a strong advantage
• Comfortable working in an international business environment, including frequent travel to customers in WE and to AAK’s Dairy Customer Innovation Center in Karlshamn, Sweden
• Excellent communication skills, with fluency in English is a minimum. Fluency in Dutch, or command of another European language, such as French, or German, is an advantage
• Personal skills: organised, proactive, customer- and service-oriented, problem solver, strong communication skills, strong in project management, flexible and a team player

The position will be based at AAK’s site in Zaandijk, the Netherlands or Merksem, Belgium. For further information about the position please contact Director Customer Innovation Europe Hans Elbek Pedersen via hans.elbek.pedersen@aak.com. For further information about the recruitment process please contact Tineke Brinkkemper, HR Manager at AAK Netherlands BV on +31 75 6278465 or via tineke.brinkkemper@aak.com.

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