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RAFO URBINA
FOOD SCIENTIST

About me

I believe in a more sustainable and transparent food system.

I am a very curious person who likes challenges. I help companies develop high-quality products; through processes that increase efficiency and reduce waste and costs. 

More than a scientist, I consider myself an artist who uses science as one of his tools to create. I don't follow recipes, I create them. Using first principles, I explore different ways to get to the desired final product. This allows me to modify the processes and equipment, facilitating the adaptability of the process in different factories and creating more innovative products.

My primary focus for the last 12 years has been on fermented plant-based products. Fermentation allows me to create nutritious products with complex flavors, using few ingredients. I like the simplicity and honesty of a clean label.

Most of my projects have also focused on working with by-products as ingredients. The best way to reduce waste is not to generate it or use it to add new value.
 

Education

 

2010 - Bachelor of Food Science

Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina

Lima, Peru.

Skills

 

Creativity, problem-solving, taste, product design, organization, communication, spanish - fluent.

 

Experience

Rebel Cheese (Austin, TX, USA)

Research & Development Consultant
(Feb 2022 - Present)

  • Created a system to manage the production and calculated costs, nutritions facts and a forecast for the ingredients.

  • Made SOPs for some and helped to scale the production. 

Culina (Austin, TX, USA)

Manager of Research & Development 
(Nov 2019 - Sept 2021)

  • Developed plant based cultivated products, as coconut yogurt, coconut kefir and others. 

  • Made the SOPs (Standard Operating Procedure) for the yogurts and kefirs.

  • Helped our partners factories to adapt the processes to their factories.

  • Supervised the quality control for all the production.

Head of Production

(May 2018 - Oct 2019)

  • Managed 2 teams of 10 people for the production of the yogurt.

  • Supervised quality control.

  • Calculated nutrition facts, costs, shelf life and created SOPs for production.

 

Distillery Espiritu Andino (Lima, Peru)

Head of Research & Development & Production

(Aug 2016 - Feb 2018)

  • Developed the first vodka made with native andean potatoes "14 Inkas"

  • Winner of 8 gold medals in international competitions and 1 double gold medal in San Francisco World Spirits competition.

  • Designed the process and the distillery to scale the production.

  • Created the SOPs to ensure the efficiency of the process and the quality of the product.

  • Managed the first 6 months of production of vodka.

Sierra y selva exportadora (Junin, Peru)

Research & Development Consultant
(Feb 2016 - May 2016)

  • Developed two different spirits made from coffee fruit and chirimoya fruit.

  • Made the SOPs for both new spirits.

  • Trained the farmers in the production of both spirits.

New World Spirits (Peru, Ecuador & Dominican Republic)

Manager of Research & Development & Production
(Jan 2013 - May 2016)

  • Developed the first spirit made from cacao pulp "Solbeso".

  • Winner of 3 gold medals in international competitions including 1 gold medal for the "Best New Spirit" in Spirits of the Americas competition.

  • Designed and built 2 distilleries in the middle of the jungle of Peru as well managed production.

  • Created the SOP for each distillery (Peru, Ecuador & Dominic Republic).

  • Supervised the production for each partner factory and the quality control of the products.

Wine Research Center (Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina) (Lima, Peru)

Research & Development Consultant

(May 2015 - Jan 2016)

  • Research & developed 5 vodkas made from amaranth, quinoa, potato, cassava & sweet potato.

  • Wrote a report (Evaluate costs, yields and flavor profiles).

Coyungo (Lima, Peru)

Co-Founder and Manager of Research & Development & Production
(Sept 2010 - Dec 2012)
​​

  • Developed Pisco "Coyungo" (Peruvian D.O. brandy).

  • Designed and constructed a mobile distillery to work directly with the farmers at their vineyards.

  • Created the SOP for the Pisco.

  • Managed the production for 2 years.

  • Supervised quality control.

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