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Drying and Milling Operator

At Hilmar Cheese Company we improve lives around the world through wholesome dairy products. Since our founding in 1984, Hilmar Cheese Company has been committed to innovation and sustainability. Our state-of-the art production facilities convert an abundance of locally sourced high-quality milk into a variety of nutritious cheeses, whey protein and lactose. The Cheese and Ingredients that we produce create a wide variety of retail and food service products from sliced and shredded cheeses, to protein supplements and infant formula. We are a trusted partner to premier food and beverage brands in for than fifty countries helping bring their vision into reality.


Throughout our decades of success and growth we have remained committed to our mission and values and these principles unite our people and guide all that we do.

A Typical Day

Primary responsibility of the Drying and Milling Operator is to assure product quality while operating separators and wash systems, as well as drying and milling equipment, during the daily production of Edible and Refine/USP.  This includes maintaining accurate/complete paperwork.  

Job Responsibilities

  • Operate, monitor and manage the separator, double crystallization refining, drying and milling equipment, including production, CIP, and associated pieces of equipment
  • Responsible for monitoring, inspecting, trouble shooting and maintaining all equipment associated with this position
  • Responsible for notifying supervisor about process issues in a timely manner 
  • Responsible for maintaining accurate and complete paperwork
  • Follow Good Manufacturing Procedures.  Understand sanitation in relation to CIP, COP, and clean up
  • Maintain and monitor all Q.C. and production programs per Hilmar Cheese & Ingredient Standards
  • Successful completion and response to all in-process testing
  • Communicate, interact and work effectively with team members to help achieve department goals
  • Assist and train others
  • Perform master sanitation program duties as assigned
  • Department team participation; GMP audits, behavior sampling, safety audit, accident investigation, management presentations, follow-up on outstanding work orders, etc.
  • Promote and Follow Company Hygience Zoning Program
  • Active participation and ownership in your training and development program and associated activities, classes and events, which will be held before, during, after shifts and during scheduled days off.  
  • Help coach and train teammates and participate in on the job, buddy training.
  • Place high priority on food safety and sanitation by understanding and executing HCC’s food safety and sanitation policies and procedures. This includes communicating any food safety incident, observation, or opportunity to your leadership team or teammates as well as participating in food safety and sanitation root cause analysis and improvement activities when required. 
  • Prioritize safety above all other job duties by having a safety first approach at all times. This includes reporting any safety issues, observations, opportunities to your teams and follow up. 

What You Will Need

  • English skills must be proficient to understand, read, write and speak English
  • Basic computer skills
  • Must be able to work 12-hour variable shifts, including weekends, holidays and overtime as needed. 
  • Ability to lift up to 60lbs

What Will Put You Ahead

  • High School diploma or GED from an accredited institution
  • SAP experience
  • Dairy manufacturing experience
  • Active/past member of departmental safety team
  • Skilled in packaging in a food manufacturing environment (level 1 role)

Physical Demands

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee will be required to:

  • Stand, walk, use hands to finger, handle or feel and reach with hands and arms, climb or balance, stoop, kneel, crouch or crawl and talk or hear.
  • Stand and walk almost the entire workday.
  • Employees must be physically capable of working in any of the job tasks within their respective areas.
  • Required to work at heights and in fairly small areas.
  • Pushing, pulling, reaching, bending, stooping, squatting, kneeling, handling and grasping, twisting/turning, repetitive bending.

Work Environment

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently exposed to the following: 

  • Exposure to dust, fumes, smoke, gases, or other irritating substances.
  • Exposure to solvents or chemicals.
  • Exposure to slippery walking surfaces: water.
  • Exposure to marked changes in temperature and humidity depending on time of year.

Working surface is primarily concrete. Where standing is required, there are rubber mats which are one-half inch thick.

Food safety is a companywide responsibility and each employee must know their role in the manufacture and distribution of safe, wholesome, and high quality products.


This description is a general statement and does not include other duties as assigned

Hilmar Cheese Company, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer/EEO. We participate in E-Verify.

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Salary Range: USD (null - null) HOURLY

Nearest Major Market: Merced