R&D Product Innovation Manager

Date: 16 Jun 2024

Location: Hemel Hempstead, GB, HP2 4TZ

Company: Britvic



At Britvic we’re on a journey to become the most dynamic soft drinks company. As one of the UK’s leading players in the FMCG market we pride ourselves on setting high standards, being courageous and pushing ourselves to think outside the bottle.  


We offer consumers a range of family favourite and global premium brands such as Robinsons, Tango, J2O, R. White’s & London Essence. We exist to help people enjoy life’s everyday moments.


About the Role:
Our R&D team is uniquely positioned to shape the future of soft drinks by bringing breakthrough innovation to life.  We’re people-centred and deeply collaborative to unlock innovation and growth against our four strategic priorities:

  1. Build local favourites and global premium brands
  2. Flavour billions of water occasions
  3. Healthier People, Healthier Planet
  4. Access new growth spaces


Our R&D team consists of highly trained scientists and professionals who work collaboratively with internal and external expert partners. Our team use science and technology to transform the future of soft drinks, creating products and packaging that help our consumers to ‘enjoy life’s everyday moments’ with a positive impact on environment and society.


As R&D Product Innovation Manager, you will apply your broad knowledge of soft drinks, packaging and quality to develop and deliver new capability and technology to our Beyond the bottle platform. Contributing to the development of a long-term innovation pipeline, working in partnership with global technical and marketing teams to ensure this is aligned to strategic business priorities for brands, breakthrough innovation and White Space. You will deliver unpackaged innovation projects that contribute to our overall brand strategies and support our healthier people, healthier planet strategy.


This role is primarily although not exclusively focussed on drink dispense solutions with a need for total soft drink product knowledge and would suit both from a liquid science or generalist background. You will explore the why of product innovation not the how and bring together the thinking of marketeers with the knowledge and technical know how of the development technicians. 


Key Responsibilities:

  1. Lead key strategic innovation projects/programs; developing the unpackaged drink platform, that will enable informed decisions about current and future product innovation strategy.
  2. Work alongside wider ‘Beyond The Bottle’/ Dispense Britvic teams to deliver platform objectives. 
  3. Maintain and build robust relationships with the supplier community on next generation technology opportunities, building internal and external capability.
  4. Build key partnerships with universities, technology partners and third parties to explore new product and packaging innovation opportunities whilst developing and maintaining a global product innovation network, encouraging and participating in open sharing and best practice across technical implementation and innovation.
  5. Manage and develop a portfolio of Product Innovation Projects that are aligned to business strategy & partner with internal technical and marketing teams to embed innovation and technology.
  6. Support the Sustainable Business and Commercial teams with delivery of product innovation that delivers against Healthier People and Healthier Planet Initiatives.


Knowledge, Skills & Experience Required:

  1. In depth knowledge and understanding of soft drinks categories, product development, packaging development and quality across beverage categories.
  2. Ability to translate consumer trends, competitor activity and environmental issues into insights and strategic direction for Product Innovation.
  3. A strategic innovative mindset, comfortable in fast-paced environments with the ability to engage and excel technical detail while considering the bigger picture and “outside in” perspectives.
  4. Knowledge of marketing, legal and regulatory challenges to be considered in product innovation and development.
  5. Understanding of current environmental sustainability legislation, technologies, and trends.



  1. Degree preferred in a Science discipline (Biology, Chemistry or Nutrition).
  2. Experience working in R&D environment, testing and learning with customers.
  3. Experience of Insight generation and opportunity identification from trend, consumer, and technical opportunities against business objectives. 
  4. Disruptive innovation project experience, utilising Design Thinking and Agile approach. 


We believe we are stronger together and that’s why we’re committed to providing equal opportunities to all applicants and employees. We know that by building a truly inclusive environment where everyone feels celebrated, safe and respected - diversity and wellbeing will naturally thrive