Process Engineer SME Extruded Popcorn


Process Engineer SME, Extruded & Popcorn



The Processing Engineer SME, Extruded & Popcorn position is responsible for the efficient production of high quality snack food products in a continuous, improvement-based environment, while also creating and maintaining a safe work environment.  This is to be accomplished through effective leadership, coaching and development of individuals.

 Essential Duties and Responsibilities

The Process Engineer Subject Matter Expert, Extruded & Popcorn position is accountable for the efficient production of high quality snack food products that are made on single screw extruders and popcorn process lines. Full understanding of theory of operation of single screw extruders and popcorn processing lines is essential to this role. Application of continuous improvement processes and leading and developing team members are also essential. Provide technical knowledge, direction, education, and assistance in the production and processing of high quality snack food products

  • Troubleshoot new or existing product problems involving designs, materials, or processes. 
  • Investigate or resolve operational problems, such as material use variances or bottlenecks. 
  • Identify opportunities or implement changes to improve manufacturing processes or products or to reduce costs, using knowledge of manufacturing processes, tooling and production equipment, assembly methods, quality control standards, or product design, materials and parts. 
  • Apply continuous improvement methods such as lean manufacturing to enhance manufacturing quality, reliability, or cost-effectiveness. 
  • Conduct mass balances of complete processes.
  • Provide technical expertise or support related to manufacturing.
  • Determine root causes of failures or recommend changes in designs, tolerances, or processing methods, using statistical procedures.
  • Prepare documentation on process control for new and existing manufacturing processes or engineering procedures to achieve product specifications.
  • Evaluate manufactured products according to specifications and quality standards.
  • Train production personnel in new or existing methods.
  • Training and development site Subject Matter Experts and process engineers on theory of operation and practical application.
  • Commercialization of new products and processes.
  • Design tests of finished products or process capabilities to establish standards or validate process requirements.


Leads and Develops Team Members

  • Coaches team members on a daily basis in the principles of production.
  • Leads the team through an emphasis on both production and people.
  • Communicates effectively with employees through both oral and written means.
  • Conducts employee training to improve employees’ expertise and knowledge in equipment operations, work safety procedures, and teamwork, or assigns employee training to experienced workers.
  • Provides feedback to employees on individual performance standards in a timely and efficient manner.
  • Builds rapport and collaborative relationships across cross-functional teams. 
  • Performs additional related duties as assigned
  • Education and Work Experience
  • 2 year technical degree or 4 year bachelor’s degree in engineering or science is preferred.
  • 5+ years of experience in food processing with substantial focus on single screw extruder corn and rice base processing (American Extrusion, Maddox, Wenger, etc.) including hands on processing, troubleshooting, and R&D.
  • Experience working with popcorn and pellet type products a plus.
  • Experience working with Continuous Improvement/Lean methods and tools such as Total Production Maintenance, Centerlines, CIL’s, Defect Handling, 5S, and Quick Changeover.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities


  • Engineering and Technology — Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Production and Processing — Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Critical Thinking — using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Troubleshooting — determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
  • Systems Analysis — Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
  • Training and Teaching Others — identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
  • Coaching and Developing Others — identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Shearer’s Snacks is an Equal Opportunity-Affirmative Action Employer – Minority / Female / Disability / Veteran / Gender Identity / Sexual Orientation