Research and Development Co-Op

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Description/Job Summary

PAID INTERN CO-OP- January - June 2019 PROGRAM I

Perdue offers students an opportunity for a career path within Research & Development through a 6-month Co-Op program. Students who are selected to join the organization’s Co-Op program will be involved in project work focused on new product development and/or line extensions to existing products within the research and development department.  We encourage students to bring their passion for learning and interest in working within a team environment to help us in developing high quality food products for the marketplace. The student will be paired with a mentor from our customized RD Co-Op program.The student is responsible for creating and sustaining products which are profitable for the organization. The internship role is instrumental in contributing to the strategic goals for research and development. 

Accepting applications for a full-time paid 6-month position for both programs. Temporary housing assistance is available for students:
Program 1:  *January – June

Program 2:  *July – December


Assist in the analysis and development of products and aid in improving our business processes, report finding to other team members, support various components and activities in the project management life cycle, work on large and smaller scale projects. Areas of concentration during internship are as follows: 

Packaging Engineer – Aid in packaging development projects to support existing and new products. Support the packaging engineering team with identification and investigation of packaging technologies. Assist with testing, data collection, and analysis to optimize performance of existing product packages.
Process Engineer – Support the process engineering team with identification and investigation of equipment, technologies and manufacturing processes that can be applied to improve ongoing operations or enable the development of new products.  Assist in defining process requirements, operating conditions, and key process control points required to consistently deliver a quality product. Assist with testing, data collection and analysis as needed to optimize existing products, manufacturing unit operations and production lines.
Product Development – provide support to developers on various project types ranging from concept, design, and production of new products. Aid senior developers in innovating new concepts and products, optimize existing products, and work with vendors/suppliers on existing and new products, and participate in plant trials. Prepare products in small and large batches using our product development lab and state of the art USDA pilot plant.
Sensory -  provide support in executing sensory evaluation and internal testing from concept to end of product shelf-life. This includes assisting the technicians and scientists with test design and analysis. The student is expected to evaluate various animal proteins to provide project support for all R&D categories.  

Required Education

This program is a full-time, 5-6 month opportunity. Applicant must be pursuing or have completed a degree within 6 months. Levels of degrees accepted are undergraduate, masters, or doctorate degree in one of the following disciplines: Food Science, Agriculture, Poultry/Animal Science, Sensory, Packaging, Process Engineering or Engineering, or Culinary. Basic understanding of research and development as it relates to food science. Highly motivated self-starter, proven people/project leadership throughout your academic and work career, ability to work in an unstructured and structured environment, demonstrated ability to work in a results-oriented environment with challenges, ability to give/receive constructive feedback, skills in Microsoft excel, word, and power point.

Authorization to work in the United States without sponsorship is required. 


This is an opportunity for students to gain valuable experience in one of our key R&D areas including product development, packaging, processing, sensory, and / or culinary.  The student will be integrated into our business with identified objectives for specific project(s) and will be partnered with a mentor to help with professional growth.

Relocation assistance is provided to qualified candidates.


Perdue is a leading international food and agricultural company.  It is a family owned company that has been in operation since 1920.  Our mission is to “Enhance the quality of life with great food and agricultural products.”  Our business decisions are guided by our values:  Quality, Integrity, Trust, Teamwork, and Stewardship. We believe in responsibly helping customers prosper with flexible, forward-thinking solutions for agriculturally based products from a uniquely trusted name.

Perdue family of companies is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer committed to hiring a diverse workforce.

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Perdue Farms, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status.