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Helen Leonardo, Scientist – From Munich R&D Center to Pilot Plant in Bad Fallingbostel

"MDLZ offers the opportunities for personal growth and professional development."

Helen Leonardo, Scientist

Tuesday, October 17,2023

Please introduce yourself (Name, location, role, etc.)

My name is Helen Leonardo and I work as an R&D scientist and I’m located in Bad Fallingbostel, Germany (home of our Philadelphia plant). I am Indonesian and have an educational background in food technology. Currently I’m a product developer for cheese products, working with brands like Philadelphia, Sottilette, Dairylea and El Caserio.

When did you join MDLZ?

I joined MDLZ back in 2013. I started as an intern in Munich R&D Center and planned to stay only for 6 months. But I enjoyed it so much and received great opportunities, so here I am celebrating my 10th anniversary.

Tell us about your career journey at MDLZ so far.

My internship was a steppingstone to my career journey at MDLZ. It provided me invaluable opportunities to explore potential career paths. It eventually turned into my first job as R&D scientist in a cross-category function. My focus was narrowed to product and process development for cheese products. I volunteered to excel my knowledge on digital transformation, which increased my competencies in modelling and simulation. After 8 years working in Munich R&D Center, I took a new challenge to relocate to the Mondelez R&D Pilot Plant in Bad Fallingbostel, Germany. I can contribute more effectively to my role, because we can learn about new production technology in the pilot plant before using it on a large industrial scale.

What makes working at the Pilot Plant in Bad Fallingbostel so unique?

Working in the Pilot Plant environment provides me access to the latest and future technologies. Most MDLZ cheese products launched in the market were initially explored in the Pilot Plant, so it plays an important role for the product development. For Research and Development, it is beneficial to have the technologies in place to enhance productivity and efficiency.

How would you describe the working environment and people culture at the plant and at Mondelez in general?

The working environment at MDLZ is collaborative. I’ve been working in different MDLZ plants and people are always so friendly and willing to support. It is a place where individuals can grow and contribute their skills and talents.

Helen Leonardo with her team members

Why do you continue to choose MDLZ?

MDLZ offers the opportunities for personal growth and professional development. I have access to learning opportunities and resources to enhance my skills and share my knowledge. The working environment which encourages growth is crucial for me, so I am proud to continue my career journey at MDLZ.