Craig Mostyn Group has appointed Wayne Crofts as the chief executive of the Australian agri-food business.

Crofts move to CEO – effective from 3 October – comes after Fremantle-based Craig Mostyn Group recently acquired the remaining 50% share in family-owned meat business V&V Walsh.

The pork, abalone and feed ingredients supplier bought the other 50% holding in 2017. Patrick Walsh was Craig Mostyn Group CEO from July 2017 to February 2022.

Crofts is CEO of Brindle Group, which owns and operates The Good Grocer Supermarkets and Rottnest retail businesses in Western Australia. He previously held leadership roles at Wesfarmers Group, a diversified Australian company that owns the Coles grocery chain.

Neil Kearney, the chairman of Craig Mostyn Group, recently retired as the non-executive chair of Australian seafood processor Huon Aquaculture, a business acquired last year by Brazilian meat major JBS.

Kearney said: “Wayne has significant experience in delivering sustainable growth in differing market conditions, from mature high-share businesses to transitional change and turnaround.

“Wayne’s appointment comes at an exciting time for Craig Mostyn Group following our recent merger with V&V Walsh. He is well placed to lead the company, bringing to life our vision for a strong food and protein business with a desire to grow jobs and exports for Western Australia.”

Founded in 1923, Craig Mostyn Group owns the Linley Valley brand of pork, producing fresh, frozen and chilled cuts from five farms destined for retail and foodservice at home and abroad. It also supplies the Jade Tiger Abalone brand, operating from three facilities in Victoria and Tasmania.

From humble beginnings as a butchers’ shop in 1957, V&V Walsh is described by Craig Mostyn Group as “one of the biggest meat processors and exporters” in Western Australia.

When Craig Mostyn Group announced the buyout of V&V Walsh, which owns the Amelia Park brand of lamb and beef, the company said the CEO of the acquired business, Peter Walsh, no longer held that position, noting he would stay on in an advisory capacity.