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Lead R&D Packaging Manager

A number of our clients are putting steps in place to prepare for life once it gets back to normal. This client, like many others, has instructed us to keep identifying potential candidates for the following role:  


The parent company to a number of iconic British brands has an opportunity for a packaging expert to lead and drive the overall R&D packaging agenda. The objective of this Lead R&D Packaging Manager role will be to set the vision for the team and support/lead on both innovation and delivery aligned to the company’s future picture and strategic approaches.


  • Support the Head of R&D in setting the packing direction and vision for the team
  • Development of the R&D packaging team (across innovation, implementation and specifications management to support short, medium and long term ambitions.
  • Direct responsibility for 2 x R&D Packaging Managers and 5-6 technologists.
  • Work across the front-end innovation/R&D interface to ensure development of a robust pipeline of concepts and supporting technologies
  • Influence 2-3 year R&D pipeline and beyond through technical knowledge and consumer insight to ensure our products continue to engage and excite consumers.
  • Develop approaches for technology scouting, material advancements, and novel concepts and translate into opportunities for product pipelines using open innovation approaches and internal capability development.
  • Lead discovery phase projects and/or implementation projects where required
  • Provide technical packaging expertise for NPD/EPD projects as well as the wider business when required.
  • Act as packaging innovation lead within R&D and wider business while providing a point of contact for external partners.
  • Build a strong internal network across the Commercial, Brand, Finance & Ops teams.
  • Develop external network of packaging suppliers, insight & innovation partners and 3rd party copackers and manufacturers (working in partnership with co-manufacturing) to support R&D and the wider business.
  • Lead packaging exploration projects to identify potential consumer focused opportunities for longer term development projects in both NPD & EPD.
  • Run packaging related workshops with internal and external input to generate stimulus and ideas that can be converted into potential concepts.
  • Develop packaging solutions from initial concept through to material and supplier selection, factory trials and implementation ensuring compliance with food contact legislation.
  • Identify product and packaging opportunities that will deliver profitable growth in new categories with new consumers.
  • Support Marketing, Sales and wider business with any packaging related enquiries and when required accompany with visits to key customers.
  • Influence and help shape the long term direction of R&D including targets, KPI’s and the R&D lab.


We are looking for a stand-out people-manager who can demonstrate an ability to work alongside multiple stakeholders with a collaborative/cross functional manner. You must have strong project management skills and a capability of shaping and leading packaging initiatives and technical work. 


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Lead R&D Packaging Manager

3 - 5 years of experience
basic salary £55k - £65k

Published on 3 Apr 2020