Food Trend Director
Job Location: Chicago
Ferrero is a family-owned company with a truly progressive and global outlook and iconic brands such as Nutella®, Tic Tac®, Ferrero Rocher®, Raffaello®, Kinder Bueno® and Kinder Surprise®. As the love for our brands continues to grow, so too does our global reach. Represented in more than 50 countries, with products sold in more than 170, the Ferrero Group is loved by generations around the world. The secret to our global success? 38,767 dedicated employees who celebrate care and quality to craft a business, careers and brands we are proud of. Join us, and you could be one of them.
Ferrero is committed to building a diverse and inclusive culture in which all employees feel welcomed and appreciated and have the same opportunities. We believe all of our people are equally talented in their own way. In nurturing the curiosity and natural abilities of our employees, we provide them, generation after generation, the means to succeed personally and professionally, enabling them to craft their journey at Ferrero. The diversity of our talents is what makes our work environment multicultural, innovative and highly rewarding.
Ferrero N.A. provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics.
About the Role:
This Senior role will be responsible for identifying and leading the scouting of food trends for the North and South American markets to support the setup of research platforms proposing nutritional topics to be addressed in Ferrero’s long-term innovation roadmaps.
- Conduct research on food trends (product positioning, scientific and nutritional topics, ingredients, consumption habits) for the evaluation of mid and long-term nutritional opportunities for the Sweet Packaged Food (SPF) industry
- Provide knowledge on current trends and emergence or evolution of new signals for confectionery, extended confectionery, better for you and functional categories, scanning across the full spectrum of the food and beverage sector and driving insights from adjacencies
- Discover nutritional trajectories and evolution/opportunities vs. risks, including ad hoc competitor landscaping to pinpoint trends and/or innovation signals of relevance
- Work closely with the Innovation Center team (Innovation Center Head, Open Innovation team, Product Observatory and Lab, Raw Materials) to collectively translate identified trends or signals into nutritional initiatives that will deliver on new product opportunities to reinforce the long-term innovation pipeline
- Partner and collaborate with the extended Ferrero functions (Local Market & Business, Product Nutrition, Food Law, CSU Business Intelligence, Marketing strategy) to build and share insights on key food trends
- Develop a solid understanding of problems, needs, and possible solutions across SPF categories
- Conduct qualitative and quantitative assessment to drive nutritional insight, gains, risks and incorporating external insights on selected nutritional topics
- Participate in the ideation of product capabilities with an emphasis on establishing points of difference versus competitors from a nutritional standpoint
- Be a key ally to the N. America Innovation center, the Food Trend Unit, and to all the Strategy & Innovation teams to effectively contribute to project reviews, including scenario development, implications and the evaluation/assessment of nutritional opportunities
- Create monthly report, ad hoc reports and detailed analysis
- Contribute to the development of scientific relationships with external experts to maximize the build-up of the food trend antennas and to continuous monitor food trend needs
Who we are looking for:
- Master’s degree in nutrition/food science or related discipline
- At least 12+ years’ experience in working in F&B companies, in food science, nutrition, innovation, and/or product development roles
- Basic commercial acumen and acquired knowledge of SPF industry; Knowledge of the SPF industry is preferred
- Competence in ingredient functionality, nutritional landscape, and basic knowledge of Local Regulations and Food law
- Successfully executed product development programs from idea to implementation working with cross-functional teams
- Enthusiastic, curious, pro-active, analytical, open-minded and can-do attitude with a strategic mind-set
- Experience working in an international and multi-cultural environment
- Strong collaborative, open minded and proactive individual
- Critical thinking and Creative problem solving
- Superior communication skills
Please note that all Ferrero employees are required to submit proof of vaccination against COVID-19. If you accept an offer of employment from Ferrero, you are expected to abide by Ferrero’s Commercial COVID-19 Vaccination Guidelines and General Procedures, a copy of which will be provided to you upon hire.
How to be successful in the role and at Ferrero:
Consumers, quality and care are at the heart of everything we do. So, to be successful at Ferrero, you’ll need to be just as consumer and product centric as we are - dedicated to crafting brilliant results for consumers around the world.
Strong analytical mind, attention to details on one hand, and ability to cooperate with employees at all levels and great organisational skills on the other, would be key to success. Employee contribution and engagement at Ferrero is based on the individual, team and organisation dimension, so you should have the ability to work independently, as a part of the team and build good relations with stakeholders at all levels. Being flexible and dealing with a dynamic working environment as well as the ability to embed new knowledge and skills in existing competencies will definitely help you to become high performer here.