VP of Process Development & Scale Up (Fermentation)


At Air Protein, we’re passionate about creating a new food system–one that pushes the boundaries of what anyone thought was possible and builds a healthy relationship between our food and our planet. This is a new era of sustainable production; we can use less and make more. We can feed the growing global population without destroying rainforests or warming the planet. Join our diverse team of passionate scientists, engineers, and business leaders working to create the future of food—meat made from elements of the air.

As an innovative food company, we are crafting the world’s first air-based meats to eliminate compromise between nutrition, taste and climate impact.  Using novel technology inspired by NASA, we convert elements found in the air into protein. Air Protein’s process is carbon-negative by design, using less land and water, and is powered by renewable energy. It’s where cutting-edge science meets bold ambition to reinvent the way we eat.

Benefits & Perks:

In addition to the chance to work with a world-class team and cutting-edge technology to help combat climate change and address the impending food crisis, Air Protein employees also enjoy competitive benefits. We offer unlimited PTO, parental leave, 401K match, and compensation plans that include employee equity. Air Protein invests in employee development and the company culture is shaped by shared values:

Protect people & the planet

Play as a team and have a growth mindset

Do what you say you will do

Be the change you seek

Create a culture of belonging

The Role:

The VP of Process Development & Scale Up will lead Air Protein’s Fermentation and Recovery Bioprocess to make novel ingredients from bench to pilot to commercial production. Reporting to the CEO, this person will lead and manage a team of engineers, chemists and fermentation scientists that work within and across functions to support the development and scale up of AIr Protein’s fermentation products to serve in a range of applications and markets.  

This includes integrating the process development function both upstream (with product discovery, industrial biology and fermentation and DSP functions) and process optimization from H2 bioconversion through downstream processing  (with process engineering and design, scale-up, technology transfer, manufacturing, and product applications functions), overseeing the facility/plant builds, plant operations.  

This position will be located in the SF/Bay Area and requires candidates to live in commutable distance to our facilities. Relocation assistance will be considered.

Key Responsibilities

  • Lead design and implementation of the fermentation, process recovery, scale-up, engineering, R&D and operations.
  • Ensure safe and environmentally sustainable operations as uncompromised priorities by implementing process safety management (PSM) or Hazardous Process Design (HPD) initiatives and programs.
  • Lead (hire, develop, inspire, manage) a group of highly effective engineers, chemists, fermentation scientists  chemical engineers and research associates.
  • Continuously identify and implement leading-edge innovations in relevant areas of fermentation manufacturing and process chemistry
  • Initiate, plan, and monitor the development of fermentation, dsp and dsp processes as a functional manager and task leader.
  • Ensure a holistic approach to integrate both upstream and downstream considerations in product/process R&D
  • Contribute to and use first principle manufacturing economic models  to screen process concepts and evaluate outcomes
  • Oversee capital projects, facility, and plant builds
  • Optimize full process for ingredient production
  • Oversee further development & scaling of the technology
  • Oversee engineering and technology R&D of CO2/H2 bioprocessing, downstream processing, and bioreactor design


  • Degree in chemical engineering, biochemical engineering, chemistry, or equivalent work experience.
  • 15+ years of leadership experience in diverse bioprocess technology, R&D and engineering environments.
  • In-depth experience with fermentation bioprocesses and process recovery.
  • Experience leading and overseeing capital projects, facility, and pilot plant build.
  • Expertise with process safety management (PSM) or hazardous process design (HPD)
  • Experience in building and deploying innovation in a process development setting
  • Fermentation experience in the food, pharmaceutical, or biotech industries.


  • Experience with gas-to-liquid, gas-to-chemicals, hydrogenation, or hydrogen (H2) related gas processes.

Skills & Qualities

  • Strong leadership in safety, demonstrated
  • Demands excellence in execution
  • Able to develop new systems / scale up innovations
  • Able to build and manage strong teams

Check us out in the media, news, and in the community:

  • Forbes: The Meatless Mafia: Four Companies Revolutionizing the Future of Food
  • World Economic Forum: Air Protein Named WEF Technology Pioneer
  • TED Talk: A forgotten Space Age Technology Could Change How We Grow Food
  • Bloomberg: Crop Trader ADM Pours Money Into Firm Making Meat Out of Air

Salary Range For Position: $234,000 - $319,000 USD Annual

Air Protein is an equal opportunity employer.

At Air Protein, we are committed to providing equal opportunities. Because we want the absolute best people, we enthusiastically invite people of every race, color, orientation, age, gender, origin, and ability – or any other status protected by law – to apply to join our team.

Research has shown that women and people from marginalized groups may not apply for a role if they aren't a 100% match.  Please don't hold back.  If you think you will excel in this role, but perhaps you don’t tick every box, we'd appreciate the opportunity to consider your application.

The Details

United States
Research & Development

About the Company

Air Protein

Turning elements in the air into sustainable protein.

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