Mr Philips, the chief executive of airports operator daa, will join Greencore in September.

He will replace Patrick Coveney who left the company at the end of March to take up the CEO job at SSP Group, an operator of food and beverage outlets in travel locations including Upper Crust.

Mr Philips has been daa CEO since October 2017 and was previously the CEO of Morrisons, the UK’s fourth largest supermarket chain, between 2010 and 2015.

He has also worked with the George Weston Group, including as COO of Loblaw Companies Limited, the leading Canadian grocery retailer, and CEO of Brown Thomas Group.

Gary Kennedy, Executive Chairman of Greencore, said that as well as his outstanding knowledge of the grocery sector, Dalton Philips has a strong track record of leading dynamic consumer-related businesses.

“We see him as the ideal candidate to lead Greencore into the next phase of its journey as it continues to emerge strongly from the challenges of trading through the pandemic,” he said.

Until Mr Philips’s arrival at the end of September, Mr Kennedy said he will continue in the role of Executive Chair, supported by Kevin Moore, the company’s Deputy CEO, and Emma Hynes, its CFO.

Dalton Philips said he was hugely excited to be joining Greencore.

“I know from my time as a Greencore customer that this is a business with exceptional dynamism, adaptability and ambition, and one that is committed to the highest levels of product quality, customer service, and sustainability,” he said.

“I am looking forward very much to joining their industry-leading team in September, and to helping to realise the significant future growth potential that I see for this business,” he added.