Co-op has faced claims of problems integrating Somerfield business

Co-op has faced claims of problems integrating Somerfield business

Former Tesco and Asda executive John Longworth is among the additions to the board overseeing The Co-operative Group's food business. 

Longworth, whose CV includes a spell as former head of Co-op trade affairs, and Kingfisher CEO Euan Sutherland will join the retailer's food board.

Last year, the Co-op established two subsidiary boards covering food and other specialist business operations, reporting to the main group board.

East Midlands Airport MD Penny Coates and B&Q, Thomas Cook and Boots director Mike Cutt will join the specialist business board.

A review of the Co-op's corporate governance review identified a need for independent directors. 

Commenting on the appointments, chairman Len Wardle said that the new directors would offer experience and independent advice to the group.

Last month, Wardle was forced to publicly back chief executive Peter Marks amid reports of falling sales at Somerfield, the business it acquired in 2008.