Samworth Brothers has chosen CCO Simon Wookey to take the reins from departing chief executive Hugo Mahoney, the privately owned UK group has confirmed.

Mahoney is leaving the Ginsters pasty maker “to pursue other opportunities”, according to a statement. He joined the company as CEO in 2022.

Wookey joined Samworth in 2019 as a group executive board director.

His career includes 20 years at fellow food-to-go business Greencore, holding a variety of senior commercial and managing director positions.

Wookey left Greencore in 2008 for Canada’s Maple Leaf Foods to take a role as president of its prepared food business. In 2012, returned to the UK, where he held several senior positions at 2 Sisters Food Group, including managing director of its convenience business, before joining Samworth.

Mark Samworth, the company’s chairman, said: “Under Hugo’s leadership the business continued its recovery from Covid and its aftermath and rose to the challenge of successfully managing and mitigating significant inflationary pressures. With the Executive team, he has re-set our business strategy and has refined our operating model and ways of working to help us better act as one Samworth Brothers with our customers and suppliers.”

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Wookey is set to take the helm from 1 July after a transition period.

“Samworth Brothers is well positioned for the future, and in the years to come the business will benefit from his development of our modernisation programme,” the chairman added.

“Hugo has made a significant contribution to the performance of our business, and we wish him every success in the future.”

Earlier this month, Samworth and Greencore recalled sandwiches and wraps in the UK due to possible links to an E. coli outbreak of more than 200 cases.

Dozens of SKUs were recalled between the two manufacturers, two of the largest suppliers of sandwiches, wraps and pre-packed salads to UK supermarkets.