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Fermentation Specialist

Job Category:  Operations and Production
Work Location:  Corbion Site
Office Location: 

Peoria, IL, US

Job Type:  Full Time
Job ID:  2689

At Corbion, we exist to champion preservation in all its forms, preserving food and food production, health, and our planet.




The Fermentation Specialist will act as a technical resource for Operations personnel and will report directly to the Operations Manager. The successful candidate will possess a strong background in biochemistry or microbial physiology (including primary and secondary metabolism), and will design, execute, and analyze industrial fermentations at fermentation scales up to 500,000L (continuous, fed-batch, and batch) to achieve production goals. Requires a high level of technical knowledge of industrial fermentation (fermenter design and dynamics, industrial bioprocess equipment and controls, facility operations, bioprocess simulations, design of experiments, aerobic/anaerobic metabolism, cellular energetics, etc.) as well as experience with various analytical techniques.




  • Provide oversight for daily fermentation operations and related activities. Generate new procedures and refine existing procedures for fermentation.
  • Work closely with shift supervisors and technicians to convey batch objectives and optimization plans.
  • Conduct routine data analysis for batch performance summarizing key performance criteria as well as developing trends that can be used to optimize yield and titer.
  • Provide effective training to plant personnel. Training will include but will not be limited to reviews of batch data/performance/trends, protocols for new fermentation strains, procedures for new and existing equipment, and safety topics.
  • Become a champion for safety proactively looking for opportunities to positively impact safety. Through fostering an environment of open communication, gather safety ideas from plant personnel and implement change.
  • Provide oversight for fermentation microbial contamination prevention and troubleshooting activities. Develop a disciplined approach ensuring contamination prevention and troubleshooting tools are being consistently utilized and improved upon.
  • Work closely with the Process Development Group to introduce new fermentation strains to the Peoria facility and to develop batch objectives and an optimization plan with the goal of obtaining continuous improvement.
  • Hands on operation of lab and pilot scale fermenters to determine best operational parameters and media formulations.
  • Work with Production Engineer to define process requirements for new equipment installation. Work with production and project engineers to review equipment installation and prepare systems for plant operation. Occasional capital project management will be required. Activities such as P&ID reviews and red lines, Pre Start Up Safety Reviews, development of SOPs, training personnel and providing oversight for commissioning and start up activities for said equipment.
  • Perform assigned facility GMP audits to support the sanitation program, good manufacturing practices (GMP) and adherence with standard operating protocols.




  • BS in Microbiology, Industrial Microbiology,  Chemical or Biochemical Engineering.
  • 3+ years of experience with industrial microbiology, biochemistry, molecular biology, or fermentation design and operation at larger scales.
  • Proficiency in experimental design.


Job Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Industrial fermentation, formulation, and optimization techniques.
  • Data collection, organization, and statistical analysis.
  • Independent troubleshooting.
  • Ability to learn quickly in fast paced environment.
  • Familiarity with bioreactors / fermenters, microplate readers, cell enumeration techniques, and colorimetric / fluorescent assays.
  • Technical aptitude for experimental setups
  • Ability to interface with external laboratories and commercial partners
  • Able to write reports and business correspondence
  • Strong computer literacy especially in Microsoft Office applications
  • Superior interpersonal skills
  • Able to work effectively with individuals at all levels and in various functions of the organization
  • Must be able to self-manage



The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


  • Work is performed in a normal office setting and on a manufacturing floor. In the office setting, there will be minimal exposure to health or safety hazards, with substantial time spent working on a computer.
  • Requires sufficient hand, arm, and finger dexterity to operate computer keyboard and other office equipment.
  • Laboratory /Pilot Fermentation operations will require dexterity and care to perform sterile transfers as required.
  • Production floor setting will result in exposure to hot and cold temperatures, noise, fumes, limited dust, and oily coolants.
  • Requires walking, climbing stairs, bending and occasional lifting of material up to fifty (50) pounds
  • The performance of this position will present exposure to an industrial environment and requires support and compliance with the published Company PPE policy including but not limited to the use of personal protective equipment such as safety glasses with side shields, appropriate attire, safety shoes, hard hat, hearing protection, etc.



This is a full-time position. Must be willing to work non-standard hours supporting a 24/7 operation including weekends as necessary.



About Corbion

Corbion is the global market leader in lactic acid and its derivatives, and a leading supplier of emulsifiers, functional enzyme blends, minerals, vitamins, and algae ingredients. We use our unique expertise in fermentation and other processes to deliver sustainable solutions for the preservation of food and food production, health, and our planet. For over 100 years, we have been uncompromising in our commitment to safety, quality, innovation and performance. Drawing on our deep application and product knowledge, we work side-by-side with customers to make our cutting-edge technologies work for them. Our solutions help differentiate products in markets such as food, home & personal care, animal nutrition, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and bioplastics. In 2021, Corbion generated annual sales of   € 1,070.8 million and has a workforce of over 2490 employees. Corbion is listed on Euronext Amsterdam. For more information:


Corbion is an equal opportunity employer and committed to a diverse workplace.  All applicants will be considered equally without regard to race, color, ethnicity, veteran status, religion, national origin, marital status, political affiliation, age, sex, sexual orientation, handicapping condition, membership in an organization or any other non-merit factors.


Corbion provides reasonable accommodation to applicants.




Corbion does not accept unsolicited resumes from individual recruiters or third party recruiting agencies in response to job postings. No fee will be paid to third parties who submit unsolicited candidates directly to our hiring managers. All candidates must be submitted by approved Corbion vendors who have been expressly requested to make a submission by our Talent Acquisition team for a specific job opening. No placement fees will be paid to any firm unless such a request has been made by the Corbion Talent Acquisition team and such candidate was submitted to the Corbion Talent Acquisition Team.

Nearest Major Market: Peoria

Job Segment: Biochemistry, Microbiology, Physiology, Medical, Engineer, Science, Healthcare, Engineering

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