Barry Callebaut, the world's largest manufacturer of cocoa and chocolate products, has appointed Olaf Blank as vice president consumer products Europe, effective from 1 December. He will also serve as MD of Barry Callebaut's German subsidiary, Stollwerck GmbH.

Blank will report directly to Onno Bleeker, who was appointed president Europe this September. Bleeker will now focus on managing the group's activities in western and eastern Europe.

Blank is joining Barry Callebaut after acting in a consultancy capacity for Rosen Eiskrem GmbH. From 2000 to 2005 he also served as CEO of chocolate maker Ritter Sport. Prior to this, he held various management positions at Wrigley GmbH in Munich, including CEO for Germany and Switzerland and International Marketing Director.

Commenting on the appointment, Bleeker said: "Olaf Blank will add more than 30 years of experience in the fast moving consumer goods sector to our company. After reaching profitability in our European consumer business we now want to build on this sound foundation. In view of the generally still fragile consumer sentiment in Germany, 2007 will be a decisive year for our consumer business."