Associate Fermentation Scientist

Deep Branch

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The Deep Branch team is currently looking for an Associate Fermentation Scientist:

  • Candidates must be self-driven and have a proven track record of process optimisation and problem solving
  • The role will be responsible for rolling out process improvements for Deep Branch’s CO2-to-protein gas fermentation across its scale-up pipeline
  • Unlike most fermentation roles, the job is likely to include travel and therefore candidates are expected to be globally mobile (normal workplace is Nottingham, UK)


Company background:

Deep Branch is a carbon recycling biotechnology company. We use microbes to convert carbon dioxide from industrial emissions into high value products. We’re a fast growing and agile startup with commercial activities both in the UK and the Netherlands.

Sustainability of animal farming and broader concerns regarding reduction of emissions are two of the biggest problems of our time. By 2050 the world’s carbon emissions must be net-zero to avoid environmental catastrophe, yet by this point our planet’s population is predicted to increase by a third. With average consumption of animal products increasing, it’s thought that the output of animal farming will have to double to meet demand.

Of the total emissions associated with the average person, approximately one quarter comes from diet and the majority of those emissions are associated with animal products. Although at Deep Branch we recognise the best way to reduce dietary carbon intensity is to reduce meat consumption, we’re pragmatic in recognising that not everyone sees it this way. At Deep Branch, we’re tackling this problem through the development of Proton™, our single cell protein.

We have partnered with two multinational animal feed producers to co-develop Proton™-based feeds for use in aquaculture and poultry. Over the next two years, we’ll be scaling our output and working together to finalise feed formulations for an anticipated 2023 market launch. Rather than relying on the conventional protein sources of protein, fishmeal and soy, which are often shipped from South America, Proton™-based feeds can be produced from locally sourced ingredients with 90% less carbon intensity. Proton™ is not just dramatically more sustainable, it’s also cost-competitive, making the transition to Proton™-based feeds an easy decision to make.

Recruitment process:

  • We’re an equal opportunity employer, we value diversity of thought and know that this often comes from a diversity of life experiences.
  • All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, colour, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran or disability status
  • We request that applicants provide a cover letter and CV to and following assessment of these, candidates may be invited to an online interview

  • The interview process may have multiple stages, but we will endeavour to be as transparent as possible and let you know as soon as we can if we think that there will not be a good fit

COVID-19 impact:

  • In light of COVID-19, Deep Branch is following government guidelines on travel and working arrangements
  • This may require an extra degree of flexibility from both parties both during the recruitment process and the beginning of the role


Job Title: Associate Fermentation Scientist

Start date: 1 September 2020

Work Locations: Nottingham, UK; Yorkshire, UK; Continental Europe

Division/Department: Operations

Reports to: Head of Process Development

Time commitment: 1.0 FTE

Conventional working hours: Any 8 hours per day between 8AM and 7PM, Monday to Friday. Evening and weekend work may be required.

Essential duties and responsibilities:

  • Nottingham based:
  • Become in-house fermentation expert, responsible for overseeing implementation of key fermentation optimisation activities, including hands on work with state-of-the-art, bespoke gas fermentation units and associated analysis equipment at lab scale
  • Document and improve operational protocols for lab-scale fermentation and assist the operational team in scale-up and scale-down
  • Be an active member of the “IP Working Group”, responsible for rolling process control innovations into the Deep Branch patent portfolio
  • Further afield:
  • Implement roll out of new strains and operational parameters across the Deep Branch scale-up pipeline, including the Mobile Pilot Unit (currently in Yorkshire, UK) and Demo Hall (mainland Europe)
  • Help oversee production campaigns at the Demo Hall (mainland Europe) and translate key learnings back to lab-based setup in Nottingham (UK)

Essential Skills, Education and/or  Work Experience Requirements:

  • An PhD, MEng, or equivalent qualification related to fermentation processes
  • >3 years experience working on the optimisation of biological processes, inclusive of time spent completing a doctorate (PhD or DEng) in a related field
  • Experience in design and setup of lab-scale fermentation processes, with the ability and knowhow to assemble and use all relevant equipment
  • Strong data handling proficiency
  • Strong communication skills with the ability to communicate complex concepts to a range of internal and external stakeholders
  • Other: UK/EU Driving License, English language fluency

Prefered Skills, Education and/or  Work Experience Requirements:

  • Experience in using programming languages (particularly python or R) for automated data collection and analysis
  • Analytics (analytical chemistry)


Gross annual salary: £30-35K

Holidays: 33 days inclusive of national holidays (national holidays falling between Monday and Friday contribute to total holidays, regardless of working schedule for employees above 0.6 FTE. All employees can choose for these to contribute to holiday allowance and work national holidays subject to approval)