People on the move in the food and drink industry

By Gwen Ridler

- Last updated on GMT

Encirc, Beneo, Princes, McCormick and the BBSRC has all announced senior appointments
Encirc, Beneo, Princes, McCormick and the BBSRC has all announced senior appointments

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Food Manufacture rounds-up some of the latest senior hires in the industry in this round-up of people on the move in food and drink.

New MD for Encric’s beverages business

Adrian Curry, MD of Encirc, (left) and  Richard Lloyd (right),
Adrian Curry, MD of Encirc, (left) and Richard Lloyd (right),

Glass container manufacturer and bottler Encirc has appointed Richard Lloyd to the position of managing director for its Beverages business unit.

Lloyd’s appointment follows the completion of Encirc acquisition of Bristol-based bottling facility The Park from Accolade Wines in early 2023, where he served as general manager for seven years.

His new role for Encirc will see him at the helm of developing and leading Encirc’s much expanded Encirc Beverages unit as the company continues to integrate The Park into its overall business.

Commenting on his appointment, Lloyd said: “The synergies between The Park and Encirc are huge. Both place innovation and sustainability at their core. I’m looking forward to building on the foundations already in place at Encirc to continue to develop and drive forward the world’s most sustainable beverages supply chain.”

Encirc manufactures more than four billion glass containers a year for the UK and Irish food and drinks market, and opened its site in Cheshire in 2005, after beginning glass production in 1998 at its plant in County Fermanagh, NI. The Cheshire plant remains the only facility globally to both manufacture and fill bottles for multiple brands from one site.

Managing director Adrian Curry added: “All of us here at Encirc are delighted to welcome Richard to lead Encirc Beverages. Richard, with his many years of experience, is going to be a real asset in helping to grow the business unit.

“The majority of the world’s leading wine brands are our customers and our sustainable supply chain is unrivalled globally. I’m very excited to see how we can keep this area moving forward with Richard’s leadership.”

Changes on the board at Beneo

Functional ingredients manufacturer Beneo has welcomed Niels E. Hower as the newest member of the executive board with immediate effect.

BENEO_Niels E. Hower
Niels E. Hower, new member of the Executive Board of Directors at Beneo

Currently managing director of Beneo-owned, Dutch plant-based ingredients firm Meatless, Hower boasts more than 25 years within the fast-moving consumer goods sector and helped co-found the Doctor Chococo brand.

Within his new role leading Beneo’s plant-based protein division, Hower will be focused on continuing the development of Meatless to meet growing demand for plant-based products, alongside Beneo’s wider ingredient portfolio including faba bean ingredients and textured wheat protein.

Commenting on his new role, he said: “I am happy to join the Beneo team whose technical and nutritional expertise and longstanding experience has made the company a leading player for prebiotic chicory root fibres, functional carbohydrates and specialty rice ingredients.

“My ambition is to grow the plant-based protein business as well as Meatless in a similar way, by accelerating market expansion and extending our solutions. In the future, we will continue to grow our range into more products to satisfy different market needs for meat and fish alternatives.”

Head of diversity hire at Princes

Siwan Smith headshot
Siwan Smith, Princes first Inclusion & Diversity (I&D) Manager

Princes has appointed Siwan Smith as its first Inclusion & Diversity (I&D) Manager.

An experienced diversity, equality and inclusion professional, Smith will be responsible for driving Princes’ I&D strategy forward, with support from the Group’s dedicated Inclusion Champions and six Colleague Resource Groups.

“I am thrilled to embark on this exciting journey with Princes​,” she said. “A long-standing and respected household name, Princes has established itself as an organisation dedicated to quality and excellence and I have been inspired in my first week by their unwavering determination and commitment to now becoming a leader in inclusion and diversity within the food and drink industry”.

Smith previously led Innovate UK KTN’s Women in Innovation and Young Innovators programmes and helped to shape their Inclusive Innovation competition.

She was announced as a winner in WeAreTheCity's Rising Star Awards for Diversity, and as a runner-up for Women's Business Club’s Diversity & Inclusion Award. Smith was also shortlisted as a finalist for the Ladies First Inspirational Woman Award and recognised in Diversein's 130 Women Who Break The Bias list in 2022.

Joe Dent, Chief People Officer at Princes Group, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Siwan to Princes. Her expertise in this space will be invaluable to the business as we continue to evolve our I&D strategy and embed it across the Group.

“Princes is firmly committed to ensuring that we create an inclusive workplace where everyone feels valued and respected – and I’m sure that Siwan will play a pivotal role in helping us to realise those goals.”

McCormick promotes Foley to chief executive

Global ingredients and flavours giant McCormick has announced the promotion of Brendan Foley to president and chief executive for company 1 September 2023.

McCormick chief executive Brendan Foley

He succeeds Lawrence E. Kurzius who has severed a chairman and chief executive of McCormick for more than seven years.

In June 2022, he transitioned the president title and responsibilities for the company’s global operations to Foley. Kurzius will continue to serve as Executive Chairman of the Board. 

Michael D. Mangan, the lead director for the McCormick board, said: “Lawrence has been a transformational leader for McCormick, bringing our global flavour platform to life through his entrepreneurial spirit, innovative thinking, and growth-oriented vision for the Company.

“Lawrence is widely credited with driving a period of tremendous growth, performance, and expansion, embedding purpose-led performance into McCormick's culture by championing the company’s industry-leading sustainability efforts, and successfully leading McCormick through the unprecedented global pandemic.”

Over the past nine years Foley has held roles of increasing responsibility, including President U.S. Consumer; President North America; President Global Consumer, Americas, and Asia; and most recently, as President and Chief Operating Officer which includes full oversight of the Company's supply chain and commercial businesses globally.

Commenting on his appointment, he said: “I’d like to personally thank Lawrence for his mentorship and continued service to McCormick.  I am truly honoured and excited about the opportunity to lead this great company with its rich and very promising future. 

“As a global leader in flavour, we are well positioned to drive growth and shareholder value by meeting the growing global demand for high quality, sustainable, healthy, and delicious products. Ensuring McCormick remains a great place to work and grow for our employees and maintaining our performance continuity are top priorities.”

Interim executive chair appointed at BBSRC

BBSRC interim executive chair Guy Poppy

Professor Guy Poppy has been appointed Interim Executive Chair of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), effective from 1 July.

His appointment follows the departure of Professor Dame Melanie Welham, who stepped down from the role after serving for five years.

Poppy will serve as Interim Executive Chair until the appointment of a permanent replacement – an open recruitment campaign is underway. Poppy will continue in his role as Programme Director of the UKRI Transforming UK Food Systems Strategic Priorities Fund alongside some responsibilities at The University of Southampton.

Poppy has twice served as associate vice president for interdisciplinary research at Southampton and prior to this as head of the School of Biological Sciences. He also served as the Food Standards Agency’s inaugural Chief Scientific Adviser from 2014 to 2020 and has published extensively on food systems and food security.

Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser, Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation, said: “I am delighted that UKRI will continue to benefit from Professor Poppy and Dr Collis’s experience and expertise, and I look forward to working with them at this exciting time for research and innovation in the UK.”

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