His promotion follows his appointment as interim CEO of this part of the business in November last year, and comes two years after he joined the company as European technical director.
McMullen has more than 25 years’ experience within the food and drink sector, having previously held senior technical and operational positions at both manufacturers Princes and HJ Heinz.
Commenting on his appointment, McMullen said: “It’s a privilege to take on this role within Baxters, one of the UK’s best-known food businesses.
‘Clear vision for the European business’
“Having held the interim role for a period of time, I have a clear vision for the European business and look forward to playing my part in its ambitious plans for the future.”
Baxters’ interim group chief executive Ron Davis said McMullen was the candidate best suited to become CEO of the company’s European division.
He added: “He has been instrumental in leading the development of the strategy and budget plan for the new financial year and is now in a position to ensure its successful implementation.
“His promotion is testimony to our investment in our ‘Talent for the Future’ programme and succession strategy.”
‘Testimony to our investment’
Headquartered in Edinburgh, Scotland, Baxters has been producing canned soups, canned meat products, sauces and salad and meat condiments since 1868.
Last month, the manufacturer sold its Canadian subsidiary Baxters Canada to three financial partners, which each invested $8m (£6.1m) in the business.
Baxters Canada said it had invested in equipment for its Saint-Hyacinthe plant to support growth and meet “the highest standards”.
Meanwhile, earlier this month, meat firm Tulip appointed Mike Wijnberg as managing director of its Fresh Division, responsible for Tulip’s abattoirs and butchery operations across the UK.