The Land O’Lakes Inc. board of directors announces its selection of Beth Ford as president and CEO of one of the nation’s largest food and agricultural cooperatives and #216 on the Fortune 500.
Ford assumes leadership of the company following the retirement of Chris Policinski effective Aug. 1.
Ford comes to the CEO role after a series of successful executive postings within the company. In December 2017, Ford was named chief operating officer of Land O’Lakes Businesses, in which role she oversaw Land O’Lakes’ WinField United, Purina Animal Nutrition and Dairy Foods business units.
Prior to that, Ford was head of Land O’Lakes’ Dairy Foods and Purina Animal Nutrition businesses, where she led record performance and growth, leveraging innovation through R&D to strengthen both brands. She also was instrumental in the acquisition of Vermont Creamery in early 2017.
Prior to joining Land O’Lakes in 2011, Ford had excelled in executive operations management and supply chain roles at International Flavors and Fragrances, Mobil Corporation, PepsiCo and Pepsi Bottling Company and Scholastic. Ford has more than 20 years’ experience specifically in the areas of technology and R&D, as well, across these four companies.
Ford also sits on the board of directors for the National Milk Producers Federation and non-profit boards, including Greater Twin Cities United Way in Minneapolis.
“At a time of unprecedented change in the agriculture and food industries, no person is better suited to lead us into the future than Beth Ford," says Board Chairman Pete Kappelman. "Since joining our company in 2011, Beth has proven she’s not afraid of hard work, and she sees every challenge as an opportunity to deliver more value for our cooperative. She’s built a track record of success in a wide array of leadership roles across a decades-long career, and in her seven years at Land O’Lakes, she has earned the trust and respect of our members, employees and customers.:
Ford becomes the ninth CEO of Land O’Lakes, one of the nation’s largest agricultural cooperatives, which was founded in 1921. Ford and her spouse, Jill Schurtz, have three teenage children and live in Minneapolis, MN.