I am Mareike Hunold, 34 years old, and I work as a Senior Technologist in the Center of Expertise - Research & Technology (CoE - R&T) in the Process Development department.
After completing my bachelor's degree in food technology at Bremerhaven University of Applied Sciences, I decided to pursue a master's degree in "Food Technology" with a specialization in "Product Design" at Wageningen University. I then wrote my master's thesis in the field of "Food Process Engineering", which was about the functionality of milk proteins. Since then, the topic has never left me and still accompanies me in my daily work.
At the time, the master's degree program also included a 6-month internship, which I started in 2014 in the process development department of R&D. Since I already worked in a dairy during my school years, DMK was always a household name and an interesting company for me. The name also plays a big role in trade journals and MILRAM brand products have always been a part of my everyday life. So the decision for DMK was very easy for me and the decision to apply for an internship here was made.
During the internship, I really appreciated the fact that I could take time to visit other locations and learn about other projects in addition to my internship project. I am glad to have gotten such a broad perspective on the entire company. In addition, I was not treated as cheap labor, as is unfortunately still the case in too many other internships. This gave me a personal experience of the DMK mission statement and in particular the core value "fair". Right at the beginning of the internship, I had the feeling that they were looking for suitable opportunities to join the company after my internship period ended. And indeed it worked out and I was able to stay at DMK as a junior developer.
I was able to achieve success quickly, so initially the junior title was dropped, followed by a further job adjustment to senior technologist in 2019. From the beginning, I was able to supervise students myself and pass on my experience. In recent years, I have been involved in and responsible for various development, optimization and technology projects. By working in the Center of Expertise (CoE), which was introduced in the course of DMK's realignment, we have the opportunity to work closely with all business units as an interface and also to deal with new technologies that may play a role in the future. This keeps the work in process development interesting and varied. I am always faced with new exciting challenges - this challenges and motivates me!
Already during my internship, I had a lot of freedom to pursue my own ideas. I was able to work independently and also take on some responsibility. The trust placed in me by my supervisors and our entire team is naturally very strengthening. This has not changed in recent years.
A pleasant working environment and nice, motivated colleagues who complement each other and support each other in difficult situations are particularly important to me. The work in process development is varied and involves a good mix of practical work in our Milk Innovation Center (MIC) as well as in large-scale trials and trial planning and evaluation at the desk. In summary, the variety in the tasks, but also a friendly corporate culture are very important to me.
Of course, it is always the best when a project is implemented in the end and the effort is rewarded. For example, I have fond memories of the first product, a lactose-free cream produced by filtration, which was well received by customers. I also remember the participation in a World Dairy Summit (IDF), where I had the opportunity to present our results on sour whey utilization to a larger audience.