Heinz has appointed Stefan Barden as area director for the UK and Ireland, replacing Peter Bowen who retired earlier this year.

Barden will report to Joe Jimenez, Heinz Europe president and chief executive and the company said he would be a key player on its European management committee.

He will be responsible for all facets of the UK and Ireland business. He is charged with driving top line growth and delivering consistent profit and innovation targets.

Jimenez said: “Over the past seven months Stefan has done an excellent job of strategically positioning the UK and Ireland for future growth. He has rejuvenated innovation in the region with the launches of Top Down Ketchup and Heinz Soup Cups and has worked hard to focus and grow our core business.”