Jobs at Alumni Ventures Portfolio Companies


Quality Assurance Manager



Quality Assurance
Burlington, NJ, USA
Posted on Tuesday, November 21, 2023
Who we are:
Founded in 2013, Thistle is a leading tech-enabled food and nutrition company that delivers ready-to-eat meals right to your doorstep. We empower our customers to get and stay healthy while improving the sustainability of our food system. Thistle began as a single pop-up location in San Francisco selling cold-pressed juices to delivering nearly 15 million delicious, healthy, plant-forward meals, organic cold-pressed juices, and snacks.
About the role:
Reporting to the Director, Food Safety and Quality Assurance, the QA Manager will oversee all aspects of Quality Management Systems, Regulatory Compliance, 3rd Party Food Safety certifications, and Customer Safety & Satisfaction. The QA Manager manages a growing team of 1 QA Supervisor plus 8 QA/Sanitation members and is responsible for training their team and facility team members to recognize defects and imperfections at all stages of the manufacturing and packaging process. Collaborating with cross-functional teams, the QA Manager generates and implements critical initiatives to protect and enhance our food quality.
This is not a desk job. We are a hands-on company, and the ideal candidate is someone who enjoys getting in the trenches and working collaboratively with the team to understand the challenges they face, identify opportunities, and work to thoroughly develop the implementation of a comprehensive food quality assurance program for our operations.
This position is 100% onsite in our Burlington, NJ, facility.

What you'll do:

  • Define, establish, and implement Quality Management Systems and Food Safety programs to ensure consumer and regulatory requirements compliance(local, state, federal, GMP, SQF)
  • Ensure the Quality Assurance department functions efficiently and accurately and complies with set company standards
  • Document, review, and approve all relevant food safety and quality documentation(manuals, procedures, SSOPs, HACCP, Prerequisite programs, etc.)
  • Support cross-functional teams and provide expertise on FSQA within those work streams, including Product Development, Engineering, Marketing, and Supply Chain functional areas
  • Collaborate in the hiring, managing, and training of the QA department staff to effectively achieve the organization's defined strategic, tactical, and operational objectives
  • Define and organically implement a food safety culture that permeates all aspects of the organization
  • Engage all relevant departments in the execution of continuous improvement and world-class quality and operational excellence activities.
  • Oversee Supplier and Co-packer Approval, Verification, and Monitoring program, including new supplier qualification process and onboarding
  • Lead implementation and ongoing program management, oversight of internal audits, GMP and SQF certification, HACCP, and FSMA compliance.
  • Responsible for all manufacturing licenses and permits with local, state, and public health departments and FDA regulatory offices—interface with State and FDA officials relating to all Food Safety compliance requirements.
  • Investigate and track customer complaints, conduct RCAs, implement the allergen program, and ensure labeling requirements are met
  • Maintain positive team member relationships and respond to all inquiries and concerns promptly
  • Collaborate on the Executive Operating Plan, KPIs, QA Scorecard, State of Business, and Cross Calibration review with the leadership team

What you'll bring:

  • BA/BS Degree in Biology, Nutrition, Environmental Health, Microbiology, or a related field
  • 7+ years of Quality Assurance experience and working knowledge of food safety programs is required; experience in a manufacturing environment is a must
  • Valid California or equivalent ServSafe Food Protection Managers Certification
  • Well-versed in GMP, SQF, or BRC type of food safety standards
  • Well-versed in FSMA guidelines and regulations; PCQI, and HACCP Certified.
  • A dynamic personality with a roll-up-your-sleeves attitude, self-motivator, and takes the initiative
  • Must be a strong team leader and comfortable working in a cross-functional environment and guiding other teams
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to clearly and concisely explain information to a variety of audiences and stakeholders
  • Strong organizational and time management skills with the ability to prioritize multiple projects, tasks, and responsibilities
  • Ability to successfully and consistently meet deadlines while maintaining attention to detail and adhering to our company mission and values
  • Tech-savvy approach with everyday tasks and communication; comfortable with G-Suite and Slack, a big plus
  • Ability to work a flexible schedule, including early morning, night, and/or weekend shifts
  • Verbal proficiency in Spanish is a plus
Diversity, equity, and inclusion are essential values at Thistle. We know we do our best and most impactful work when we feel we are represented and belong. We're proud to actively recruit and hire talented people from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences. We do not discriminate based on race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.