Tara McCarthy is to be appointed as the new chief executive of Bord Bia, it was announced today.
She will succeed current chief executive, Aidan Cotter, who is set to retire in January 2017.
Ms McCarthy is currently chief executive of Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), since September, 2015.
"It is an honour to be asked to lead Bord Bia during what is a very exciting time for the Irish food and drink industry," she said.
"Our total exports target of €19bn, as set out by FoodWise 2025, is ambitious, yet achievable, and I am looking forward to working with all stakeholders, including farmers, food manufacturers and producers in order to reach that goal.
"I want to pay tribute to my predecessor, Aidan Cotter, and I hope to build upon his outstanding work over the coming years."
Prior to this, she worked with Bord Bia for over 20 years, holding a number of senior positions, including Senior Manager, Consumer Foods Division (2001 – 2011), and Director, Food and Beverage Division (2011 – 2015).
She holds a B.Comm from University College Galway and a Masters of Business Studies from UCD’s Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School.
"On behalf of the Board, I am delighted to announce the appointment of Tara McCarthy to Chief Executive of Bord Bia," said chairman Michael Carey.
"Tara has clearly demonstrated her leadership capabilities during a 20-year career in the agri-food industry.
"The competition for the role was very intense and throughout the robust process, the panel was hugely impressed by the high calibre of candidates.
"Tara is exceptionally well qualified to take the organisation to the next level, with a deep understanding of the work of Bord Bia.
"She has proven to be a strong leader and fully appreciates the need to build close relationships with the organisation’s key stakeholders.
"I am confident that Tara will meet any challenges facing the sector, and pursue new opportunities, with vision, determination and imagination."
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed today welcomed the announcement.
"Tara McCarthy will bring a wealth of domestic and international experience to her new role at a very important juncture in the agri-food industry during this period of challenge and transition," he said.
"I wish her every success in her new role.
"I would like to take the opportunity to pay tribute to Aidan Cotter. His superb leadership skills combined with qualities of strength and determination have delivered excellence in Bord Bia market insight, quality and promotion services and a close partnership with the agri-food sector in driving sustainable growth."