Chris Deen, the current CEO of ForFarmers, stepped down for health reasons. Roeland Tjebbes (CFO) and Pieter Wolleswinkel (COO) have assumed the tasks and responsibilities of the chief executive in the interim.
Spierings would become a member of the executive board of ForFarmers for a period of one year, to be appointed by the general shareholders meeting. The company is set to convene an extraordinary general meeting of shareholders for that purpose; it is expected to take place in January, with Spierings taking up his role as CEO thereafter.
He comes to the Dutch feed compounder with strong ag industry credentials.
Spierings began his career at Friesland Foods in 1986, where he led the merger with Campina as CEO several years later. From 2011 to 2019, he was CEO of Fonterra, the leading player in New Zealand’s dairy industry. Since then, he has been helping companies transform and ensure their business activities meet sustainability goals, through his consultancy, The Purpose Factory.
He also has an MBA from the University of Glasgow.
Jan van Nieuwenhuizen, chairman of the supervisory board of ForFarmers, acknowledged Spierings’ significant international experience in the dairy industry as well as his great drive, energy, and expertise in helping to future-proof the agricultural sector, while being mindful of environmentally sustainability objectives. “Spierings has the experience, expertise and personality to head up ForFarmers in its current phase."
Commenting on his nomination, Spierings said the agricultural sector is innovative and progressive, and it plays an important role in the food chain, so there is a critical need to make it even more sustainable.