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Quality Assurance Specialist - 1 Year Contract

Minneapolis, United States
If you are passionate about empowering others to live their happiest lives and kick sugar, we want to hear from you! We are SmartSweets, the innovators of the first candy that kicks sugar.
As the squads Quality Assurance Specialist, You will be playing a vital role in executing our exponential growth and driving forward the mission to kick sugar. You have an analytical mind and are a team player!

Who Are We?

At SmartSweets, we believe in the power of curiosity. We believe with a smart combination of passion, focus and innovation that can change the world! We believe there is no time like the present — and the ability to affect change lies within each of us. We trust it's possible to live in a world where candy doesn’t always equal sugar, and where words like guilt, permission, and indulgence no longer carry weight. We believe we can enjoy candy just as we enjoy life - to the fullest. 

Kick Sugar, Keep Candy.

Our Mission: Provide people with the candy they know and love, without the sugar. 

Our Vision: To be the leader global leader in revolutionizing candy.

Our track record: We are in our fourth calendar year in market and are distributed in over 18,000 stores in the US and Canada. We have experienced record sell-throughs with our key partners and we are grateful to have cultivated a devoted tribe, with over 384,000 in our social media community.

Our Core Values:
  • Extreme Ownership: We have a deep sense of accountability and lead egolessly .
  • Celebrating Individuality: We believe the uniqueness and individuality of each squad member makes us stronger as a whole.
  • Curious Innovators: We are innovators and harness our energy to relentlessly create solutions - All ‘problems’ are opportunities hidden in disguise.
  • Fuelled by Passion: We are fuelled by tenacity, passion and we embrace change.
  • Honouring Relationships: We are honoured to be included and to be part of our customers’ journey. We are grateful for those that support us – Customers, partners and each other.
A Day In The Life: 

This role reports to the Manager, R&D and Innovation and for the right candidate, can be located in either Ontario or the US (Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Minnesota, Idaho). This role is not an on-site QA manufacturing role, and will involve travel, which includes to new or existing manufacturing partners, suppliers, warehouses, and/or retail partners. Ability to travel within Canada and the USA  is a requirement, up to 20% of the time. 
  • Responsible for conducting partner audits and assessments in early scoping stages of new manufacturing partnerships, as it pertains to new product development 
  • Responsible for developing, maintaining, and executing mock recall procedures on a defined recurring schedule 
  • Responsible for leading any activities associated with a product recall or withdrawal from the market, if needed, and following compliance standards set by CFIA and/or FDA
  • Remain up to date on food safety and quality trends, issues, and initiatives in the Canadian and USA food industry, as relevant to the brand
  • Responsible for receiving and managing consumer complaints, in collaboration with the Customer Experience team, and for identifying trends and defining benchmarks to industry standards, and driving resolutions with manufacturing partners to achieve sustainable improvement
  • Provide leadership during QA investigations related to consumer complaints
  • Manage all raw material documents and specifications through activities including filing, identifying areas of concern prior to commercialization, and keeping up to date specs 
  • Perform finished product inspections to ensure quality standards are being met
  • Liaise with internal teams, specifically Operations, as needed, to create and maintain new procedures for recipe management, lot coding, and traceability initiatives 
  • Establish and maintain micro and finished-good testing with all manufacturing partners
  • Support R&D in maintaining and reporting all shelf-life initiatives as related to product development
You are:
  • A passionate and curious personality who has a proven history of  QA wins
  • You like to dive deep into the “why” and “how” to continually understand and improve processes
  • Enjoy staying up to date on current food and nutrition trends
  • Passionate believer in kicking sugar and creating better options to consumers
  • A team player who makes others’ days better through your interactions and attitude
  • Someone who doesn’t mind wearing all the hats and owning tasks #startuplife
  • Comfortable to own and manage multiple projects independently 
  • Collaborator who thrives on teamwork and maintains the “make it happen” spirit
  • Excited to live and breathe our values, are fired up by our #kicksugar mission, and must love to have fun!
You have:
  • Bachelors of Science (B.Sc) in Food Science or related scientific field
  • At least two (2) years of experience in QA or related field, relating specifically to the Canadian and/or USA market
  • At least two (2) years of experience in or supporting a food processing and/or manufacturing setting
  • Thorough knowledge of food processing, Quality Assurance, and CFIA and/or FDA regulations as related to food safety and quality assurance 
  • Regulatory experience an asset
  • Demonstrated problem-solving skills with a track record of identifying and resolving quality-related issues in a manufacturing setting
  • Highly organized with attention to detail and excellent record-keeping skills
  • Competency in writing and maintaining SOPs such as quality reporting and quality processes
  • Executional expert with the ability to juggle multiple balls at once while finding efficiencies in an entrepreneurial, ultra-fast-paced environment 
  • Proven ability to work collaboratively with cross functional partners from Marketing, Sales, Supply Chain, Finance, and other functional areas to provide broad and integrated perspective
  • Comfortable with Google Drive, Excel, Microsoft, and related software
  • Able to travel within North America
  • Excited to live and breathe our values, are fired up by our #kicksugar mission, and must love to have fun!
Excited to join and play a key role in our mission to Kick Sugar? We want to hear from you! Please apply with your resume, cover letter and why you’re excited about kicking sugar
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