Fermentation Scientist, Product Development


New Leaf Symbiotics (NLS), an agricultural biologicals company is looking for a Fermentation Scientist with experience in the fermentation of microorganisms at an industrial scale for use as live microbial products. NLS company headquarters and laboratories are located at the BRDG Park facility at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, in St. Louis, Missouri.  We are seeking an individual with a passion for sustainable agriculture and biological solutions, who will be responsible for the development of new microbial based products.

Fermentation Scientist Responsibilities and Duties:

  • Grow and harvest bacteria using aseptic technique to create and maintain research material as needed.
  • Maintain detailed records of experimental data and perform preliminary data analysis
  • Manage on-site pilot plant activities including direct supervision of a small cross-functional team.
  • Manage on- and off-site tech transfer and commercial manufacturing functions.
  • Implement technology transfers, process validation, and improvements for new and established commercial products.
  • Manage the design, supervision and performance of pilot and lab fermentations for their impact on downstream formulation stability studies, tank mix compatibility studies, spray-ability, adjuvant compatibility and other functionalities to ensure the commercial viability of formulated products.
  • Create and troubleshoot protocols as needed
  • Collect data and perform analysis
  • Assist with general lab maintenance duties including media and solution preparation, general equipment maintenance, cleanliness and organization of the laboratory, and dishwashing as needed
  • Assist with other related lab and greenhouse projects as needed to help NewLeaf Symbiotics meet its objectives


  • An MS or PhD Degree(s) in Biochemistry, Microbiology, Bacterial Physiology or a related field.
  • 6 or more years’ experience in a commercial or academic research laboratory environment in the field of microbiology, biochemistry, organic chemistry, microbial fermentation, or industrial microbiology, with an emphasis in microbial applications in agriculture.
  • 0-4 years industrial experience in development of biologically based products in the food, agrichemical or specialty chemical industry is highly preferred.
  • Hands-on experience operating laboratory fermenters: shake flask to commercial production scale, executing experimental protocols for the development of key manufacturing processes.
  • Experience applying directed biosynthesis, fed-batch, and continuous culture techniques for improved yields of fermentation processes.
  • Experience with neo-classical strain improvement programs with knowledge of metabolic engineering directed at improvements in biomass, functionality, and metabolite production.
  • Understanding of impact factors that improve strain stability and process robustness.
  • Experience in a semi-preparative pilot plant; identifying complex scale related impact factors, implementing pilot trials to define process improvements, resulting in significant manufacturing cost reduction for both fermentation and downstream processes.
  • Managerial experience developing and documenting process designs within regulatory guidelines.
  • Ability to improve cost drivers such as mass transfer and process kinetics.
  • Experience conducting purification experiments, using micro-filtration, preparative chromatography, and HPLC for process analytics/trending
  • Energetic and self-motivated individual able to work in a team environment with relentlessly progressing schedules.
  • Knowledge of general techniques and principles in microbiology and chemistry
  • Ability and desire to work independently as well as in a collaborative team-environment
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, problem solving skills, and detail-oriented

About NewLeaf Symbiotics:

NewLeaf Symbiotics is an agricultural biologicals company that discovers, develops, produces, and commercializes products containing beneficial plant microbes. NewLeaf was founded in 2013 at the Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, and has raised over $75 million in venture capital. Its team has grown to 35+ members including 12 PhD scientists. NewLeaf has filed over 75 patents, has 15 products in its pipeline, and in 2017 introduced its first two products in the US, Terrasym 401 for soybeans and Terrasym 402 for peanuts.


Please send a cover letter and CV/Resume to Subject Line; Fermentation Scientist, Product Development. References required upon request.