Vice President Research and Development

Posted: April 21, 2021

Closing: May 26, 2021

The VP R&D is a driving force in establishing Smallfood as a leader in scientific innovation and expertise.  The successful candidate will provide leadership to Smallfood’s research and development team, propose and develop strategies for all aspects of microbial-based fermentation, down-stream processing, production of innovative nutritional ingredients, efficient scale-up of new technologies and operational excellence for the company’s fermentation platform. 

The VP R&D is an executive level position accountable to the Smallfood leadership team that builds and delivers strategy in alignment with the company’s commercial vision.  As the key scientific leader, this role will interface with internal and external collaborators to advance the company’s interests and provide key scientific insight and considerations for medium and large capital projects

Key Support Person: Chief Strategy Officer

Location:  On-site at Smallfood’s Dartmouth, Nova Scotia facility


  • PhD in Biochemistry, Microbiology, Biochemical Engineering or closely related field with 10+ years of work experience
  • Prior experience working with fermentation processes, down-stream processing and scale-up of technologies from the laboratory bench-top to pilot and production plants
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills with ability to distill complex scientific information into easily understood, accessible language
  • A team player who engages easily with both internal teams and external collaborators
  • Strong technical writing and proposal writing/reporting experience and proven success in securing funding
  • Solution-orientated and maintains flexible and adaptive approaches to advance the company’s interests in a pre-commercialization environment

The primary responsibilities of this role are:

Strategy 40%

  • Develop the research and development strategy and executional plan aligned to the company’s commercial vision
  • Maintain clear and timely communication on R&D activities to the leadership team
  • Support the engineering team with scientific expertise and considerations for financial modelling and capital projects
  • Fortify intellectual property estate with patent applications and trade secrets and help ensure Smallfood maintains its freedom to operate

Infrastructure 20%

  • Provide scientific support for planning and implementation of R&D and production related infrastructure
  • Develop and optimize standard operating procedures and ensuring those procedures adhere to GMP requirements, where applicable
  • Develop and maintain a budget and R&D expense forecast for monthly review
  • Support on-going development and implementation of resource management programs to measure and optimize energy efficiency and sustainability 

Revenue 20%

  • Carry out R&D activities in microbe-based platforms leading to new products or processes
  • Support the Revenue team by translating scientific processes into understandable content for a wide range of audiences
  • Provide scientific insights to support the company’s sales & marketing efforts
  • Support Revenue team as a scientific expert in key presentations
  • Lead sample preparation for key strategic relationships

Human Dynamics 20%

  • Build, lead and develop the R&D team: managing all HR requirements including recruiting, hiring, and on-boarding of new scientists, and performance managing employees supported by this role
  • Provide leadership and coaching to scientific team members and other team members as appropriate
  • Continuously advance the company’s scientific knowledge & capability by maintaining a network reach into developing science and technology fields
  • Lead by example and use company values as a decision-making tool
  • Embody company purpose, values and the cultural commitments
  • Build healthy and prosperous relationships within team, company and with external partners


  • Participate in Ecosystem leadership, share best practices that will contribute to the success of the entire Ecosystem


Smallfood offers competitive salary, health plan benefits and the opportunity to influence the course of history of a groundbreaking company.

Please forward a cover letter and resume to apply for the position. Only candidates who are deemed eligible for interview will be contacted.

Our Ecosystem values the diversity of the people it hires and serves. Diversity in our Ecosystem means fostering a workplace in which individual differences are recognized and respected.

We welcome applications from all qualified candidates, including but not limited to Indigenous Peoples, Two-Spirit, people of colour, Black/African Nova Scotian and other African countries of origin, LGBTQ, transgender, people with disabilities, and non-binary individuals.  

As an Ecosystem, we recognize and are happy to provide reasonable accommodations throughout our selection process and to employees. Please make all accommodation requests at least 48 hours before a scheduled interview or event to or our Director of People and Process, Kath Perry, at 902-802-4682 or

Wondering what it's like to live in Nova Scotia? Check out this recent article from MacLeans Magazine:…

How to apply

Please email your cover letter and resume to to apply. 

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