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Microbiologist (Caldwell, ID)

The J.R. Simplot Company is a diverse, privately held organization, with roots firmly planted in agriculture and agriculture-related businesses. The J.R. Simplot Company is a true farm-to-table company with operations that touch every aspect of agriculture, including seed production, farming and ranching, plant sciences, fertilizer manufacturing, food processing, commercial product development, and distribution.


Maintains operations within the Food Group Microbiology laboratory contributing to Simplot’s Food Safety program. This includes microbial analyses of food products, shelf life research projects, laboratory expenses, analytical instrument maintenance, and inventory control of supplies. Participates in proficiency test programs by accredited organizations. Executes internal audits at plant microbiology labs in accordance with Company established audit standards, prepares audit reports, makes recommendations for improvement of factory food quality systems and troubleshoots production processes when required. Provides daily Microbiological testing support to Idaho Plant Operations. Conducts research and validation of new technologies to be implemented in the Tech Center and/or plant labs.

Key Responsibilities

  • Analyzes the microbiological quality of food products and environmental samples to assist new product development and Simplot plants.
  • Obtains process/water/product/swab samples from various plant production areas, complies with plant safety requirements.
  • Perform routine lab functions including but not limited to, biohazards waste containment and removal, inventory, cleaning of lab equipment and supplies, preparing media.
  • Completes data entry into the laboratory quality assurance systems (MLA and MMS) and implements Good Laboratory Practices (GLP). Participates in accredited laboratory proficiency test program and collaborative studies. Maintains satisfactory z-scores in quarterly proficiency testing. Maintains instruments, service records and data generated in the lab (electronic and hard copy forms). Updates and revises in-house microbiology SOPs. Trains technicians and interns to ensure adherence to GLP technique.
  • ISO 17025 requirements: Maintains standard requirements for ISO 17025 accreditation by working within the requirements of the NAFG Laboratory Quality Management System. Exhibits technical competence in these areas. Accuracy of results established by analyzing a Certified Reference Material. Measure of uncertainty calculations utilized to verify adherence to requirements.
  • Researches shelf life of new or existing food products. Generates a final report of the study that details methods, procedures, results, and conclusions.
  • Required to work in a Biosafety Level II (agents that pose moderate hazards to personnel and the environment.) BSL II personnel must have specific training and handling of pathogenic agents and are competent in handling infectious agents and associated procedures.
  • Required to work some weekends (about 1 every 4 weeks).
  • Available to travel to Simplot plants or to other locations for work assignments of short duration.

Typical Education

Bachelor of Science Degree from 4 year college or university required (Microbiology preferred).

Other Information

  • One year of related coursework and/or experience preferred.
  • Highly skilled in scientific procedures/lab safety and detail oriented.  
  • Must have knowledge of food microbiology, food chemistry, and food processing. *LIMS (Laboratory Information Systems) experience and/or knowledge.
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite software, specifically Excel and Word.
  • Knowledge of laboratory audit standards and QA/QC programs.
  • Knowledge of ISO 17025 - General requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories.
  • Be able to lift up to 30 lbs., climb steep stairs, work in hot/cold environments, and is able to accurately perceive colors. 


COVID-19 vaccination required (medical or religious accommodations will be considered as appropriate).

Job Requisition ID: 7646

Travel Required: None

Location(s): Tech Center - Caldwell 

Country: United States

**The J.R. Simplot Company is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer and will consider all qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, physical or mental disability, medical condition, sexual orientation, military or veteran status, marital status, or any other protected status.**

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