Dr. Oetker appoints John Brassington as new UK joint managing director 

UK – Frozen pizza manufacturer Dr. Oetker has appointed John Brassington to succeed Georg Heerdegen Parsbo as the joint managing director of its UK operations.  

Georg Heerdegen Parsbo is stepping down from the role to become a member of Dr. Oetker’s international board. 

In his new role, Parsbo will assume responsibility for people and culture and act as a coach for Africa, the Middle East, Asia, and Australia.  

Formerly executive head of UK sales, Brassington will now be responsible for sales, marketing, category, insights & net revenue management, inclusion & diversity, quality assurance, HR, and act also as a coach for Dr Oetker Ireland. 

“Thanks to strong direction over the past four years from both Georg and Johannes, we’re in an incredibly exciting position to capitalise on opportunities within the categories we operate,” said Brassington. “I’m looking forward to taking on the challenges of driving future growth.” 

Johannes Rosenthal will continue to serve as MD and also assume responsibility for the business’ UK operations in Leyland in addition to his current responsibilities of supply chain, finance, admin, purchasing and IT. 

Matt Pringle, who was previously head of sales – channel development at Dr Oetker UK, will join the leadership team as executive head of UK sales. 

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The leadership shakeup at the frozen food manufacturer comes as it looked to promote growth in its core categories of baking and frozen pizza in both retail and out of home – between 2018 and 2022, retail sales value grew 13.4% to £243.3m.  

Müller Milk & Ingredients on a recruitment drive  

Meanwhile, Müller Milk & Ingredients (MMI) has launched a recruitment campaign for more than 150 jobs aimed at maintaining customer service levels of over 99% for own-label dairy customers.  

The company said it  is looking to fill vacancies across various positions, ranging from HGV drivers, driver trainers, and driver apprentices, to dairy production and distribution operatives. 

 Despite the UK food supply chain undergoing one of its biggest peacetime challenges, Müller Milk says that its business model has enabled it to fair much better than competitors.  

Jenkins, MMI chief executive officer attributes this success to among other factors, a largely capable in-house logistics team which it now seeks to expand even further.  

Bakkavor gets new GM for Wigan  

Earlier, fresh-prepared meals manufacturer Bakkavor appointed Chris Biddle to lead its Wigan factory as general manager.  

Biddle, who will be tasked with further investment in the Wigan site’s primary produce – mashed potato, joined the site from Bakkavor USA, where he served as general manager for the past two years.  

Prior to his time with the business, he was site operations director for Parkcakes Bakery and had been with the company since 2007. 

Biddle’s appointment comes as Bakkavor reported revenue in the 52 weeks to 25 December 2021 – was up 6.2% compared to 2020 and 1.2% compared to 2019.  

Last year also saw the manufacturer secure a £14.4m (US$19.52m) asset finance deal from HSBC UK to help fund an overhaul of its refrigeration systems. 

The overhaul is expected to start with plant replacements at its Sutton Bridge and Boston sites in Lincolnshire and the Bo’ness site in West Lothian. 

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