C Manly Molpus, president and CEO of the Grocery Manufacturers Association since 1990, will step down at the end of the year.

“After 16 years as CEO of this remarkable organisation, I have accomplished my goals, and with the development of a new strategic plan, it will be an appropriate time for me to leave,” Molpus said. “I deeply appreciate the steadfast support of the board and the membership that has allowed GMA to lead a unified industry on the critical issues of the day.”

The GMA represents many of the US’s leading branded food, beverage and consumer products companies. GMA member companies employ more than 2.5 million workers in all 50 states and account for more than US$680 billion in annual sales.

Molpus had informed the board of his intention to leave the position last November.

GMA Chairman Richard Lenny, chairman, president and CEO of The Hershey Company, said: “Manly has been a strong voice for our industry in a time of great change. On behalf of the board and the membership, I thank him for his leadership and dedication to GMA. His commitment to excellence, knowledge of the industry and political savvy have assured GMA’s success and continued leadership for the nation’s food and consumer products companies.”