Manager, Contract Manufacturing Operations

Job Locations US-CA-Los Angeles | US-CA-Bakersfield
Job ID 2021-1282
# of Openings


If you believe the world needs a healthier, plant-based food system then Califia Farms is the place for you. Join our mission to innovate delicious plant-powered foods that make going dairy-free desirable. Our name comes from the Spanish legend of warrior Queen Califia, the goddess of bounty and abundance who ruled over the mythical island of California. We make our daily decisions using these six core values: Do, Learn Improve; Act Like an Owner; Challenge the Status Quo; The Bottle is Half Full; We, Not I; and Using our Sixth Sense (being conscious of our impact on others and the planet).


The Manager of Co-Manufacturing Operations will join a dynamic Operations team, reporting to the Senior Director of Co-Manufacturing, coordinating and overseeing contract manufacturing operations for Califia Farms. This role interacts directly with all Califia Farms co-manufacturing partners, supporting day-to-day and long-term co-man relationships, contracts, product quality, and production operations. Califia Farms will add 3 new co-manufacturers in 2021 (expanding to 8 total facilities), including international expansion. The ideal candidate for this role will have experience in production planning, aseptic and ESL beverage processing and packaging, filling, in addition to contract management with external manufacturing partners. In addition, the role will also work closely with R&D and QA to ensure contract manufacturers produce to Califia’s product specifications. Responsibilities will also include partnering with all co-mans on continuous improvement efforts such as waste reduction, root cause investigations / corrective actions, and optimizing performance and cost. This individual must understand Califia’s diverse supply chain including multiple co-packers with varying processing, packaging, and storage capabilities. Travel for this role may range from 25% - 50%.


  • Support on-going operations at Califia Farms co-manufacturing facilities: demand planning, production scheduling, ingredient and packaging sourcing, processing, filling, quality assurance, food safety, and integration with Califia Farms distribution system
  • Identify and select new co-manufacturing sites to assure product supply and expand Califia Farms manufacturing capabilities as needed for future growth
  • Procure and develop manufacturing capacity for all Califia products at co-manufacturers to enable assured supply and future growth
  • Quality assurance – food safety systems, thermal processing requirements, facility and equipment operating standards, product specifications
  • Procurement / purchasing knowledge – packaging (bottles, closures, print substrate, case configuration and design), and ingredients / commodities
  • Financial acumen – understanding input costs for product manufacturing: ingredients, packaging, manufacturing costs, gross margins, and production volume thresholds (minimum order quantities, tiered pricing models, batch sizes, loss percentages)
  • Excellent communicator at all organizational levels – CEO, marketing, sales / product development, plant management, quality assurance, and logistics / supply chain
  • Administrate manufacturing agreements, contracts and negotiation – non-disclosure agreements, facilitate discussions with legal counsel, standard terms, negotiating favorable contract terms
  • Project management – demand forecasting, product development timelines, packaging development lead times, product trials, interdependencies of project components
  • Coordinate product trials with Califia Farms R&D and support teams
  • Manage and drive business simplification efforts (i.e., lean manufacturing, supply chain complexities, etc.)
  • Ensure standard and best processes are maintained across all co-manufacturers and Califia internal manufacturing


Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Food Science, Chemical Engineering or Process Engineering
  • 5-8 years’ experience in food industry
  • Prior experience managing food and beverage contract manufacturing operations


Preferred Qualifications

  • Knowledge of food processing: pasteurization processes required, batch/blend requirements, ambient and cold chain storage requirements
  • Aseptic practices and regulatory knowledge


The Company is committed to providing equal opportunity for employees and applicants in all aspects of the employment relationship, without regard to race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, marital status, veteran status, disability, age, religion or any other classification protected by law.


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