Careers in the Netherlands

Managing Director R&D Operations (Japan)

Do you want to be responsible for the R&D station of a leading vegetable seed company?

Do you have a strong network in the horticultural research community and are you a people-oriented manager? If so, apply for this fulltime vacancy in the Chiba Prefecture.

How does your job as Managing Director R&D Operations at Rijk Zwaan look like?

As Managing Director R&D Operations you fulfill an essential role for the organization and functioning of the RZ Japan breeding trial station and the maintaining and developing relationships with external parties like our market and also universities and governments. This requires an understanding of the Japanese vegetable seed market. You are in close contact with our local distributors and internal RZ breeding departments and breeding stations elsewhere in the world, where relevant breeding projects are carried out. Additionally, you are responsible for:

  • The commercial relevance of the breeding trials
  • The communication of the results of the breeding trials to the Japanese commercial partners
  • Close interactions with the commercial and product development teams of our local partner Takada and other commercial partners
  • Networking with relevant Japanese research institutes and universities
  • Maintaining contact with government agencies
  • Organizing germplasm collections in Japan for relevant RZ crops
  • Providing purpose, direction, and motivation for your team

Your contribution

You are a team player and able to think and act independently. Moreover, you can maintain a good balance between the long-term goals and short term demands. You have an open personality, good communication skills, you are trustworthy and sensitive to good advice. We are seeking a good leader and organiser with an international outlook, someone with an active and practical approach, orientated towards persevering and problem solving. As a Managing Director R&D Operations it is important to have a broad interest in all aspects of managing a company including fostering the RZ company culture, managing human and financial risks, legal compliance and the public image of the company. In addition, we can find the following on your resume:

  • A completed university degree with knowledge of horticulture, plant physiology, plant pathology and breeding
  • At least 10 years relevant work experience in an R&D environment
  • Knowledge of and experience with people-oriented leadership

What can you expect from us?

Rijk Zwaan has been active in the Japanese vegetable industry for around 25 years, in partnership with the Japanese seed company Takada and other Japanese breeding and commercial partners. Rijk Zwaan plans to establish a breeding trial station in Japan so that it can improve the adaptation of its varieties for Japanese growing conditions and market requirements. Commercial activities will continue with RZ’s long established commercial partners. Besides an entrepreneurial and innovative work environment with constantly new challenges, we are happy to offer you:

  • A permanent contract from the start
  • An international working environment with highly motivated colleagues
  • An extensive on boarding program
  • Leadership courses at IESE Business School in Barcelona
  • A good work/life balance

Interested ?

For this position Rijk Zwaan is working with Apex in Japan. The procedure is being supervised by Japheth A. Worthy. You can send your English written application to him at For further information you can call him on +81 (0)3-5860-2742.

The interviews will be held in English. We will consider your application carefully, which may take some time. You will hear from us as soon as possible.

An assessment and screening will be part of the procedure.

Rijk Zwaan, your new employer?

Rijk Zwaan is an international family company with a people-oriented culture. Rijk Zwaan is right at the start of the food chain. We develop vegetable varieties and sell the seeds produced from them globally. From our strategic position we contribute to the world food supply. Everything we do is about growth. The growth of natural products that we export around the world. The growth of our company, which currently employs over 3,000 people in more than 30 countries. And above all the growth of our people: we give you every opportunity to use your own initiative and achieve your full potential.